‘Blues for An Alabama Sky’ – Amusing Forecast at the Mark Taper Forum | PICs


L-R: Nija Okoro and Greg Alverez Reid in “Blues for an Alabama Sky” at Center Theatre Group / Mark Taper Forum through May 8, 2022. – Photo Credit: Craig Schwartz Photography

*The Center Theatre Group presents Blues For An Alabama Sky, now playing at The Mark Taper Forum.  Opening night brought out the usual galaxy of stars, Debbie Allen, Norm Nixon, Dawn Lewis, Kiki Shepherd, Susan Kelechi Watson (This Is Us) and many more.  As the lights rose, the audience was transcended to Harlem, New York in the 1930’s due to the clever writing of Pearl Cleage.

The characters in the story weave a delicate balance of ambition, danger and reality. Angel (played by Nija Okoro) dreams of being a famous entertainer and has swapped seeking love in lieu of any man who can support her ambitions.  Guy (played by Greg Alverez Reid) dreams that his fashion designs will finally be admired by Josephine Baker, to whom he has been writing in Paris. The demure but strong-willed Delia (Kim Steele) is on the front lines for women’s rights and family planning. Meanwhile Leland Cunningham (Dennis Pearson) and Sam (Joe Holt) anchor the story as two men with opposing values of faith, family and women’s reproductive choices. An entertaining relational debacle ensues as each moment unfolds thanks to the skillful eye of director Phylicia Rashad.

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L-R: Joe Holt and Kim Steele in “Blues for an Alabama Sky” at Center Theatre Group / Mark Taper Forum through May 8, 2022. – Photo Credit: Craig Schwartz Photography

The creative team for Blues For An Alabama Sky includes John Iacovelli (scenic design), Wendell C. Carmichael (costume, wig and hair design), Elizabeth Harper (lighting design) and Jeff Gardner (sound design), with original composition by Dontae Winslow. Casting is by Kim Coleman, CSA and Michelle Blair is the production stage manager.

Tickets for Blues for an Alabama Sky are currently on sale at Center Theatre Group / Mark Taper Forum and start at $30. They are available through CenterTheatreGroup.org, Audience Services at (213) 628-2772 or in person at the Center Theatre Group Box Office (at the Ahmanson Theatre at The Music Center, 135 N. Grand Avenue in Downtown L.A. 90012).

L-R: Dennis Pearson and Nija Okoro in “Blues for an Alabama Sky” at Center Theatre Group / Mark Taper Forum through May 8, 2022. – Photo Credit: Craig Schwartz Photography

Performances run Tuesday through Friday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 2:30 and 8 p.m., Sunday at 1 and 6:30 p.m. Call for exceptions. Center Theatre Group, one of the nation’s preeminent arts and cultural organizations, is Los Angeles’ leading nonprofit theatre company, which, under the leadership of Managing Director / CEO Meghan Pressman and Producing Director Douglas C. Baker, programs seasons at the 736-seat Mark Taper Forum and 1,600 to 2,100-seat Ahmanson Theatre at The Music Center in Downtown Los Angeles and the 317-seat Kirk Douglas Theatre in Culver City.

In addition to presenting and producing the broadest range of theatrical entertainment in the country, Center Theatre Group is one of the nation’s leading producers of ambitious new works through commissions and world premiere productions and a leader in interactive community engagement and education programs that reach across generations, demographics and circumstance to serve Los Angeles.  Click here:  for updated COVID Safety information.

LaRita Shelby
LaRita Shelby

LaRita “Jazzy Rita” Shelby is a journalist, screenwriter & entertainer and V.P. of Business Development & Special Projects for EURweb.com, newly branded Everything Urban & Radioscope.  Winner of MIMPA’S 2020 Entertainment Journalist of the Year Award & Proud member of Sigma Gamma Rho.  LaRita is the author of The Brand Beside the Brand and On My Father’s Side. She also has a Masters in Media & Communications Psychology from Touro University Worldwide.  Chat, swap ideas & vision at [email protected]


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