Arts Center Offers Supporters Permanent Naming Privileges on Commemorative Bricks
PITTSBURGH, June 14, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — August Wilson House (AWH), the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright’s childhood home, is opening as an arts center for the Hill District later this summer—a tribute to his legacy, and offering educational, cultural and community programming aimed at strengthening youth, neighborhood residents, and nurturing artists and scholars locally and around the world. The Hill district, essentially a city within a city, came to life when recently freed Black men and women seeking a better life quickly found homes there along with jobs in steel mills. From the 1930s until the 1950s, the Hill District, known as the ‘crossroads of the world’, was home to a thriving Black music, art, culture, and commerce culture.
To support the opening, AWH is launching its Legacy Brick campaign, offering August Wilson fans and AWH supporters across the country the chance to purchase commemorative and memorial bricks through this special fund-raiser. The campaign allows Wilson supporters to make his house a home – a home for community artists – by purchasing a legacy brick that will be incorporated into the house’s restoration. People who purchase legacy bricks build their own legacy by supporting ours. This is a limited-time opportunity to have your tribute included before AWH’s August 2022 opening. Legacy bricks cost from $100 to $1,000 and will be strategically located along prominent walkways, entryways, and patios at the center.
Denise Turner, Esq., President and Acting Chief Executive, AWH describes the Legacy Brick campaign as transformational: "August Wilson is iconic and well known globally as the theater’s poet of Black America, and we are both proud and thrilled to celebrate him with this incredible arts center. While August Wilson House seeks to preserve the cultural legacy of August Wilson and all that he has done to inspire the celebration of familial history, we are paying this forward by extending the opportunity for people to honor the legacies of their own families through our Legacy Brick Campaign August Wilson left an eternal legacy, and now his supporters and fans have an opportunity to create their own." Russell Hornsby, a well-known American actor known for his roles and Eddie Sutton on Lincoln Heights, Luke on In Treatment, and Detective Hank Griffin on Grimm, and Lyons in the movie Fences, is one of the luminaries involved in promoting the project.
Already a site of cultural pilgrimage, AWH will feature restoration of the few rooms that the Wilson family lived in at the rear of the building; other spaces will showcase audio and digital exhibitions that help interpret Wilson’s work and the life and the community and culture in which he grew up. Other parts of the renovated center will include small artist studios and community gathering spaces. Outside, in a backyard theater, will be annual productions of Wilson’s American Century Cycle, his 10 plays that chronicle the 20th century.
AWH will be a spiritually rich cultural hub for the Hill District and larger Pittsburgh community, offering signature theatrical productions and events, art exhibitions and literary workshops, roundtable discussions and classes in the tradition of the Black Arts Movement. Ultimately, AWH will be a catalyst in the Hill’s revitalization, linking with other Hill institutions (some being restored themselves) into a network of revival. Wilson left a significant legacy in Pittsburgh, on Broadway, throughout the nation and in his two later home cities, St. Paul, MN, and Seattle, WA, where he moved in 1990; he ultimately passed there in 2005.
August Wilson House, the great artist’s childhood home, is opening as an arts center for the Hill—a tribute to his legacy, with a willing heart to nurture artists to come. Our mission: to celebrate the literary and personal legacy of August Wilson and serve as an arts center to nurture the historic Hill District community and arts practitioners and scholars influenced by his work. August Wilson House aims first to celebrate the rich story of August Wilson’s personal memory and community history that shaped his transforming art, and second to extend his legacy.
August Wilson House Website: https://augustwilsonhouse.org
Media Contact: Tashion Macon at 818-749-8786 ~
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