“A Soldiers Play “ Hits The Broadway Stage After 40 Years
In 1981, a groundbreaking film “A soldier’s play,” produced by African American Charles Fuller, first premiered on stage in New York City.
The following year Fuller became the 2nd African American in history to win the Pulitzer award for drama. Since the show in New York City in 1981, the play has not been seen in the act on stage.
Now 40 years later, Broadway has included the play on the list of plays that would be running this year. The play debut at the roundabout theatre in January and is set to run to March 15, 2020.
The opening featured both the previous and current characters of the play on stage.
The background story of the play is based on Charles’s fuller life’s journey in Army serving America during the Korean war although, the story and characters are fictional.
The play tackles racism in an unusual way in the force system. Its setting is in a seldom army base during world war II.
The first scene of the play shows an African American Solider Sergent Vernon Waters walking in the shadows, staggering and drunk.
He screams “They still hate you! They still hate you !”, and later two gunshots are fired and shows Waters collapsed to the ground, dead.
Investigations begin under an African American lawyer captain Richard Daven Port, to determine the murderer of Waters the black solider.
The lawyer and other black troops suspect the Klan, which there have already been reports of discrimination against soldiers of colour.
However, the lawyer soon discovers that many more apart from the Klan had motives to kill the character Waters who was cruel to his own kind to.
Fuller now 80 years of age claims that each of the characters in the story is a figment of people he has actually met during his time serving the Army. He says
“ I have run into people like that all my life, they are not happy about who they are, what they are and where they are.”
In this production, David Alan Grier plays Sergent Waters. David believes that Waters’s character shows a more displaced inner self-identity, one that doesn’t accept the colour of his or her skin because of discrimination from another race, so it causes one to hate his/her own race.
Charles fuller admits that since the first showcase of the play there has been an evolution in the system.