Manhattan Theatre Club’s staging of August Wilson’s Jitney, directed by Tony Award winner Ruben Santiago-Hudson at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre, concludes its limited engagement on Broadway March 12. The play is the only work from the late two-time Pulitzer Prize winner’s American Century Cycle that had never previously been seen on Broadway.
Set in the early 1970s, the story follows a group of men who make a living driving unlicensed cabs or jitneys. The Broadway premiere of Jitney began previews December 28, 2016, and officially opened January 19 to critical acclaim.
In a recent interview, director Santiago-Hudson expressed his desire to transfer the production to another theatre for a longer run, but plans have yet to be announced. “My mission now is to make sure that we do have life…to find a way to continue and to be able to share this with as many people as possible,” he told Laura Heywood during an AOL Build Series interview in February.
The cast of Jitney features Harvy Blanks (Jitney in WNYC’s Greene Space American Century Cycle recording) as Shealy; Tony Award nominee Anthony Chisholm (Radio Golf, Jitney at Second Stage) as Fielding; Obie winner Brandon Dirden (The Piano Lesson, Clybourne Park) as Booster; André Holland (Joe Turner's Come and Gone, Moonlight) as Youngblood; Carra Patterson (Significant Other, Wit, Straight Outta Compton) as Rena; Michael Potts (The Book of Mormon, Aubergine) as Turnbo; Keith Randolph Smith (Fences, King Hedley II) as Doub; Ray Anthony Thomas (Jitney and Fences in WNYC’s Greene Space American Century Cycle recordings, Between Riverside and Crazy) as Philmore; and Drama Desk Award winner John Douglas Thompson (Joe Turner's Come and Gone, Satchmo at the Waldorf) as Becker.
Scroll through photos of the Broadway debut of Jitney below:
First Look at August Wilson’s Jitney
The creative team includes David Gallo (scenic design); Toni-Leslie James (costume design); Jane Cox (lighting design); Darron L. West (sound design); Bill Sims, Jr. (original music); and Thomas Schall (fight director). Oscar and multiple Grammy Award-winning singer and songwriter John Legend is a producer.
MTC’s Samuel J. Friedman Theatre is located at 261 West 47th Street, New York.
(Updated March 12, 2017)