Next at Pittsburgh Playwrights

Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre Company in association with August Wilson House present


By August Wilson
Directed by Andrea Frye
Preview August 23rd
Opens Saturday August 24th
New dates added! Through Sept. 22nd
Presented outdoors at 1839 Wylie Ave. in Pittsburgh’s Hill District

August Wilson’s Gem of the Ocean features the potent power of Aunt Ester, Wilson’s gatekeeper to spiritual matters, and the hearts of the Hill residents she loves. When Aunt Ester opens her home at 1839 Wylie Avenue to the troubled Citizen Barlow, a recent migrant from the rural South, a battle ensues not only within Citizen, who begs Aunt Ester to “wash his soul,” but also between Citizen and Caesar Wilks, a stern man of the law, threatened by Citizen’s independence and defiance of his authority. As Solly Two Kings becomes a mentor for Citizen and a model of a man, bound by nothing but freedom, Citizen must choose a past steeped in fear, or a future made glorious with destiny and purpose.

We will perform August Wilson’s masterwork outdoors at the actual location given in the play for 285-year-old Aunt Ester’s home, 1839 Wylie Avenue.

Extended through September 22nd! (Note: The production will not have preview performances on August 16th-19th as previously announced.)

Read the program book (PDF)

Previews: Post-Gazette, Post-Gazette (info on the schedule change)

Buy Tickets


Chrystal Bates as Aunt Ester
Jonathan Berry as Citizen
Kevin Brown as Solly Two Kings
Les Howard as Eli
Wali Jamal as Caesar
Marcus Muzopappa as Selig
Candace Walker as Black Mary

Meet our all-woman production and design crew!

Director Andrea Frye
Producer Ashley Southers
Stage Manager Shanita Bivins
Music Kathryn Bostic
Sound Design Angela Baughman
Lighting Design Latrice Lovett
Scenic Design/TD Diane Melchitzky
Costume Designer Kim Brown
Hair and Makeup Designer Cheryl El-Walker
Master Electrician Madeleine Steineck
Fight Director Lisa Ann Goldsmith

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miss-julie-boysPittsburgh Playwrights Theatre Company is committed to developing and showcasing the works of local playwrights; from accomplished masters like August Wilson and George S. Kaufman to promising new talents.

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Our productions are also supported by:

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Gem of the Ocean artwork by Darnell Chambers

*Appears courtesy of Actors’ Equity Association