August Wilson's American Century Cycle (Collage by Hollis King)

Our history-making reading and recording series, August Wilson’s American Century Cycle, marks the first time an organization has been granted rights to record all 10 plays in the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright's celebrated chronicle of African-American life in the 20th century. From August 26 through September 28, a host of Wilson players and longtime collaborators joined us in The Greene Space to perform live dramatic readings of his plays, all of which were recorded to be preserved for future generations.

Explore the project, go behind the scenes and learn about Wilson's legacy below with our videos, excerpts, photos and timelines. 

Accessing the Recordings
Video of the performances is not available for on-demand viewing, but look for selected plays to be broadcast on WNYC and public radio stations across the country beginning spring 2015. Audio will also be available here on our website for on-demand streaming. Below, enjoy excerpts of the readings and full event videos from our August Wilson Talk Series.

Recently in August Wilson's American Century Cycle

FULL VIDEO | August Wilson Talk Series: Reminiscences

Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Watch on-demand video of our conversation with friends and loved ones of the playwright as they share their personal reminiscences of him, both on and off stage.

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PHOTOS | August Wilson's "King Hedley II"

Tuesday, October 08, 2013

View backstage and performance photos from our production of August Wilson's King Hedley II, directed by Michele Shay.

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PHOTOS | August Wilson's "Jitney"

Thursday, October 03, 2013

View backstage and performance photos from The Greene Space's presentation of August Wilson's Jitney, directed by Ruben Santiago-Hudson.

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PHOTOS | August Wilson's "Seven Guitars"

Saturday, September 28, 2013

View backstage and performance photos from our production of August Wilson's Seven Guitars, directed by Stephen McKinley Henderson.

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FULL VIDEO | August Wilson Talk Series: Religion, Spirituality and Africa

Friday, September 27, 2013

WQXR's Terrance McKnight hosts a conversation examining how the playwright used the characters in his American Century Cycle to demonstrate the empowerment that comes from embracing one’s identity and the ancestors who came before.

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PHOTOS | August Wilson's "Two Trains Running"

Thursday, September 26, 2013

View backstage and performance photos from The Greene Space's stage reading of Two Trains Running, directed by Michele Shay.

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My First August Wilson Play...

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Cast members and directors in our August Wilson recording series share what their first experience with the playwright's words, characters and stories meant to them. You can share your own Wilson moment with us, too!

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VIDEO EXCERPT | Taraji P. Henson in August Wilson's "Joe Turner's Come and Gone"

Monday, September 23, 2013

Watch a scene from August Wilson's Joe Turner's Come and Gone directed by Phylicia Rashad and featuring Taraji P. Henson, Keith David and Jason Dirden.

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FULL VIDEO | August Wilson Talk Series: Bringing Black Works to Broadway

Monday, September 23, 2013

Watch our recent conversation on the challenges and triumphs of bringing works featuring prominent African-American characters, actors and story lines to Broadway. Hosted by WQXR's Elliott Forrest. 

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LISTEN | Brian Lehrer Talks August Wilson's American Century Cycle

Friday, September 20, 2013

Series artistic director Ruben Santiago-Hudson, associate artistic director Stephen McKinley Henderson and audio theater producer Arthur Yorinks sat down with Brian Lehrer today to talk about the August Wilson festival.

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VIDEO | "Fences" Performed Live in The Greene Space

Thursday, September 19, 2013

In August Wilson's play Fences, a son asks his father, "How come you ain't never liked me?" Watch the powerful scene that unfolds in this excerpt, featuring Ruben Santiago-Hudson and Jonathan Majors.

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VIDEO | "Berta, Berta" from "The Piano Lesson" Live in The Greene Space

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Watch a clip of the song, performed during The Greene Space's presentation of August Wilson's The Piano Lesson.

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PHOTOS | August Wilson's "The Piano Lesson"

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

View backstage and performance photos from The Greene Space's presentation of The Piano Lesson, directed by Ruben Santiago-Hudson.

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VIDEO | Ebony Jo-Ann Sings "Ma Rainey's Black Bottom"

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Watch a clip of Ebony Jo-Ann performing the title role in August Wilson's "Ma Rainey's Black Bottom." 

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VIDEO | Poet Sonia Sanchez on August Wilson

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Groundbreaking poet and playwright Sonia Sanchez opened our presentation of "The Piano Lesson" with reflections on August Wilson and his legacy.

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PHOTOS | August Wilson's "Joe Turner's Come and Gone"

Monday, September 09, 2013

View backstage and performance photos from The Greene Space's reading of Joe Turner's Come and Gone, directed by Phylicia Rashad.

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FULL VIDEO | The Women of August Wilson's Century Cycle

Friday, September 06, 2013

The male characters may often be the central drivers of the narratives in August Wilson's American Century Cycle, but it's the women who are considered the theatrical backbone. Watch on-demand video of our dynamic conversation.

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FULL VIDEO | August Wilson and the Lloyd Richards Effect

Friday, September 06, 2013

Theatre director Lloyd Richards discovered and championed August Wilson’s plays and directed six of them on Broadway. WNYC’s Leonard Lopate explored one of the most successful artistic partnerships in American theatre. Watch on-demand video of the conversation.

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PHOTOS | August Wilson's "Fences"

Thursday, September 05, 2013

View photos from our reading of August Wilson's Fences, directed by Kenny Leon.

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PHOTOS | August Wilson's "Ma Rainey's Black Bottom"

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

View photos from our presentation of Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, the opening performance of our recording series, August Wilson's American Century Cycle.

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