A Raisin In The Sun at Arena Stage

A Raisin in the Sun is a play by Lorraine Hansberry that debuted on Broadway in 1959. The title comes from the poem “Harlem” by Langston Hughes.

My mother’s job gave her complimentary tickets to see A Raisin In The Sun at Arena Stage located in Southwest DC near the waterfront.

I have never seen the original play or the movie but I didn’t want to spoil my experience by looking it up beforehand. If you are like me, stop reading this post right now. I won’t spoil it but I will give background and details about this all-time classic play.

Before heading to the play my mother and I parked at the public parking garage on 4th st. (across from the Safeway) because they offered a discounted night/weekend rate of $14. It is nearly impossible to find street parking. Also, Arena stage is in a neighborhood that is going through gentrification (the process of renovating and improving a house or district so that it conforms to middle-class taste) so Arena Stage advises that those visiting park as close as possible.

A Raisin In The Sun

My sister joined us for the evening as well and we decided it would be nice to eat dinner before the play. We picked Station 4 and tried to get a table without a reservation but the hostess told us they were full for the night but if we saw a bar table, grab it!

SN: Station 4 offers a discount on your meal if you are attending a show/play at Arena Stage.

Thankfully, we found a high table in the bar area. You don’t have to order from the bar menu, you can ask for the dinner menu too. Everyone’s food was pretty good and I was satisfied with the service.

A Raisin In The SunStation 4 pizza

A Raisin In The Sun is based on the African-American family that has a dream. Each individual character has a dream that seems out of arms reach. This particular family is five/six generations from slavery. Even though they are free from captivity they still struggle from gaining the freedom from poverty and the obstacles that keep them from achieving a life of wealth and comfort.

“Seem like God didn’t seem fit to give the – black man nothing but dreams – but he did give us children to make them dreams seem worthwhile.” – Mama, Act One, Scene One, A Raisin In The Sun

 

I loved the stage set up for A Raisin In The Sun. From the very beginning to the very end each actor/actress had your attention. But I will say that Lizan Mitchell who played Lena Younger did a PHENOMENAL job. She made me feel every emotion and by the end, I felt as if she were my mother/grandmother. Will Cobbs who played Walter Lee Younger executed his character role to a T. He really personified every black man’s frustration, hopes, dreams, coping with hard times, pride, and a journey into his manhood to do what is right.

A Raisin In The Sun

At the end of the play my eyes were filled with tears and the entire crowd applauded non-stop until every last actor/actress left the stage.

Please support Arena Stage and all the people that make A Raisin In The Sun possible. To learn more about the play and buy tickets click here: Tickets

March 31 — May 7, 2017
Fichandler Stage
Until next time,
Lin Alishia
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