By Jared Bowen | Saturday, April 28, 2012
April 27, 2012
Charles Dickens in America (The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration)
BOSTON — It is a tale of two tours. In dual visits to America, decades apart, Charles Dickens experienced the best and worst of times. His travels in Massachusetts, however, were mostly enjoyable, as detailed in a new museum exhibition at the Lowell National Historical Park.
Dickens was 29 and eager to see America, a country of promise. It was 1842 when he began his North American tour in Boston, and as Florian Schweizer, Director of the Charles Dickens Museum, describes him, Dickens was dashing.
“When he came here with his long hair and his flamboyant personality, it was something that really surprised the Americans. He was somebody who shocked people with the amount of jewelry and the waistcoat he was wearing,” he said.
A quartet of blues musicians gather in a run-down 1920s Chicago studio, waiting for legendary blues singer Ma Rainey to arrive and record new sides of her old favorites. Young, hotheaded trumpeter Levee (local rising star Jason Bowen) aspires to a better life for himself and sees the emerging form of the blues as his ticket to fame and fortune. This Tony and Pulitzer Prize-winning play, August Wilson’s first Broadway hit, completes the Huntington’s mounting of Wilson’s Century Cycle.
For the first time in several years Broadway Across America has announced a very full, very exciting season for Boston.
Watch the puppets in action. Trailer from War Horse
>>The Book of Mormon After winning 9 Tony awards in 2011, including Best Musical, Mormon is already selling out in just hours as national tour dates go on sale. It plays here next April.
>>Receiving exceptional acclaim during West End and New York runs, the drama War Horse (told largely via staggering puppetry) won five 2011 Tony awards including Best Play. It will run in Boston in October.
>>The Colonial Theatre will open once again thanks to a partnership with Broadway Across America, the Citi Performing Arts Center and Emerson College
>>Tuck Everlasting For the first time in seven years we'll receive a pre-Broadway try-out, playing at the Colonial Theatre in June, 2013
>>Also: Memphis, Sister Act and returning favorites Mary Poppins, Jersey Boys and Wicked.
Loeb Drama Center, Cambridge
The original production of Pippin premiered on Broadway in 1972. Directed by Bob Fosse, it won nine Tony Awards, four Drama Desk Awards, and ran until 1977. Pippin is a staple of the American Musical cannon, with the songs Corner of the Sky, Magic To Do, l Guess I’ll Miss The Man, Glory, No Time at All, Morning Glow and Love Song./p>
About the Author
Jared Bowen Jared Bowen is WGBH’s Emmy Award-winning Executive Editor and Host for Arts.