Huntington Theatre lobby named for August Wilson
BOSTON – Boston’s Mayor Michelle Wu, Huntington Managing Director Michael Maso, Huntington Artistic Director Loretta Greco, and costume designer and executor of the Wilson estate Constanza Romero Wilson celebrated the legacy of the legendary playwright August Wilson Wednesday, October 19, 2022, with a dedication ceremony naming the historic lobby of the gorgeously renovated theatre after the two-time Pulitzer Prize winner.
The brief ceremony took place on stage in front of the packed theatre, immediately prior to the opening night performance of August Wilson’s Joe Turner’s Come and Gone.
Huntington Managing Director Michael Maso began by welcoming neighbors, colleagues, civic leaders, and audiences back to the Huntington Theatre after being closed to the public for 941 days, first for the pandemic and then the 20-month renovation project.
“Just as we are reopening our theatre, we are also renewing our creative relationship with August Wilson, the single most impactful and transformative artist in Huntington history,” Maso said.
“This is a historic, one-of-a-kind space, the first civic playhouse in the country to be established and supported generation after generation through partnerships and community,” stated Mayor Wu. “The walls of this building have seen so much change outside in the world, but even more striking are the types of worlds that have been created within the walls of this building and that we will continue to see stay right here on Huntington Ave.”
“August Wilson changed the face of American theatre,” declared Huntington Artistic Director Loretta Greco, praising Wilson for inspiring and paving the way for a generation of Black playwrights. “When he began conjuring his American Century Cycle in 1982, there was nothing like it and generations of creative fires were ignited. In a hundred years, people will still gather together communally, to seek inspiration and truth through the trials and the majesty of every-day life within these extraordinary plays.”
“I can’t imagine a place where August’s presence is more felt than these theatres where he started and he developed his beautiful work,” said costume designer Constanza Romero Wilson, August Wilson’s widow and the executor of his estate. “I also congratulate you all for this beautiful, renovated theatre. It is a gift to have uncovered and rediscovered the beauty of this place.”
Maso and Romero Wilson then unveiled the plaque designating the space as the August Wilson Lobby. The plaque was placed in the historic lobby where following the performance, many audience members touched the plaque or took photos with it to celebrate the momentous occasion and the special evening.
AUGUST WILSON LOBBY PLAQUE
The text of the plaque reads as follows:
August Wilson (1945 – 2005) is the two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright and visionary author of the American Century Cycle chronicling the African American experience in the 20th century, which changed the face of the American theatre. Between 1986 and 2005, August worked in residence at The Huntington bringing seven of those seminal plays to life. In honor of his enormous personal contribution to and deep appreciation for The Huntington, we hereby dedicate this space as the August Wilson Lobby.
The plaque is a gift of five anonymous donors.