The landmark trial of the Scottsboro Boys is brought to life in Philadelphia Theatre Company's production of the multiple Tony-nominated musical The Scottsboro Boys with music and lyrics by the legendary team of John Kander and Fred Ebb and book by David Thompson, running January 20-February 19 at the Suzanne Roberts Theatre (Broad and Lombard Streets). The first production since its Broadway run, The Scottsboro Boys features original direction and choreography by Susan Stroman, recreated by Jeff Whiting, with original Broadway cast members Derrick Cobey, Rodney Hicks, KendRick Jones, Forrest McClendon, JC Montgomery and Clinton Roane. They are joined by new cast members Andrew Arrington, Gilbert L. Bailey II, Nile Bullock, Ron Holgate, and Eric Jackson and Philadelphians David Bazemore and Kaci Fannin.
Previews begin Friday, January 20 with Opening Night on Wednesday, January 25. Performances run Tuesday through Sunday until February 19. Tickets starting at $25 are available by calling the PTC Box Office at 215-985-0420 or visiting PhiladelphiaTheatreCompany.org. Philadelphia Theatre Company's Suzanne Roberts Theatre is located at Broad and Lombard Streets.
The Scottsboro Boys is a stirring and highly original musical that explores the infamous 1930's 'Scottsboro Case' in which a group of African-American teenagers are falsely accused of a terrible crime, ultimately provoking a national outrage that laid the groundwork for the American Civil Rights movement. The Scottsboro Boys is the definition of inspired American musical theater with a gorgeous and melodic score and rousing choreography.
"The Scottsboro Boys is about nine boys who are just trying to survive - to get a job, get back home, start a life. And, above all, prove to the world that they matter," said librettist David Thompson.
Continued Director/Choreographer Susan Stroman: "A uniquely American story about an important chapter of American history, The Scottsboro Boys is a story that still has relevance today. So many of those issues are unresolved, and threaten to remain so unless we engage in a dialogue about them. I look forward to working at Philadelphia Theatre Company. Our hope is this production will be a way to get the conversation started, and to carry it forward."
In addition to the standard Book Club and Meet-the-Artist post-show discussions, PTC is offering several events to illuminate the historical and contemporary relevance of The Scottsboro Boys. On January 22, WURD-AM will offer a live broadcast of a community conversation about how race plays a role in the criminal justice system, featuring panelists Michael Coard and Marc Lamont Hill. PTC will host American Playwrights in Context featuring a conversation with composer John Kander and book writer David Thompson on January 29. On February 15, PTC will collaborate with the Pennsylvania Innocence Project to present a Continuing Legal Education event featuring an in-depth look at the Scottsboro Case and the politics of injustice, with the Honorable Louis H. Pollak, son of one of the original ACLU lawyers defending the Scottsboro Boys and Dan T. Carter, author of Scottsboro: A Tragedy of the American South.