Saturday, February 15, 2020

Charles Fuller Never Expected Broadway. At 80, He’s Arrived.

By Salamishah Tillet
The playwright Charles Fuller, center, is flanked by Douglas Turner Ward, at left, and David Alan Grier, at right, during the opening night curtain call for “A Soldier’s Play.”
Charles Fuller is more surprised than anyone that his most celebrated play has finally made it to Broadway. After winning an Obie Award for “Zooman and the Sign” in 1980, he became only the second African-American awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, for “A Soldier’s Play” in 1982. He went on to write screenplays, a young adult novella and other dramas (most recently “One Night,” in 2015). Now 80, he is the first to admit that they were mainly for black audiences, and as a result, Broadway and the attention that comes with it was not what he was aiming for, much less needed. But there he was in a theater district hotel suite after flying in from Toronto for opening night, both straining to hear and eagerly trying to answer rapid-fire questions about “A Soldier’s Play,” directed by Kenny Leon for the Roundabout Theater Company. [More]