Review of Rep’s A Raisin in the Sun
February 7, 2011 • Olivia Taylor, writer
Filed under Features
Drew Central High School students traveled to The Rep in Little Rock Feb 3 for the Arkansas Rep’s performance A Raisin in the Sun, a play written by Lorraine Hansberry.
Organized by Ms. Eulea Kiraly, English I and drama teacher, students watched a performance of the play about an African-American family living in the Southside of Chicago in the 1950’s, a time when racism was still an everyday problem.
It opens after the death of Lena’s husband, the head of the family. Waiting on an insurance check, the family dreams about how it will be used. Beneatha, who is in school to become a doctor, wants it to pay for her school. Walter Lee wants to open a liquor store and become a business man. Ruth remains steadfast in her belief that Lena should decide where the money goes. She dreams of buying a house and getting out of the neighborhood, a mutual dream in the family.
The main characters are all family- Lena Younger, the grandmother; Walter Lee Younger, her son; Beneatha Younger, her daughter; Ruth Younger, Walter Lee’s wife; and Travis, their son. Other characters include Joseph Asagai and George Murchison, Beneatha’s suitors; Karl Lidner, the president of the Clybourne Park Improvement Association, who is trying to keep the Youngers from moving into their all-white neighborhood and Bobo and Willy Harris, Walter Lee’s “business” partners.
“A Raisin in the Sun” addresses racism and the relationships that we all share, making it a production that everyone can learn from and be inspired by. The title comes from a line in a Langston Hughes poem, “Harlem: A Dream, Deferred”: “What happens to a dream deferred? Does it dry up like a raisin in the sun?”
The production had an absolutely awesome set and cast, bringing to life the lines that most drama students have studied many times, and telling the story with such a fervor that it’s impossible not to share their emotions.
After the show, the drama club met with some of the actors. The actors who were playing the parts of Bobo (Laurence A. Stepney), Joseph (Segun Akande), George (Michael Chenevert), and Karl Lidner (Jon Froehlich) were glad to oblige them in pictures and autographs, finishing a great day for the members of the club.