Fall Arts Best Bet: Fences at American Stage

August Wilson's best play, Fences, is about Troy Maxson, an African-American rubbish collector whose bitterness and sense of lost opportunities make him a problematic husband and father.

Set in Pittsburgh in 1957, it's also about a time when new opportunities for black citizens were slowly becoming real, but the indignities of the past were too raw to be forgotten.

As in all Wilson's plays, the language is poetic, the characters are indelible, and the metaphors — including, in this case, the trumpet carried by Troy's brain-damaged brother Gabriel — are brilliant. What happens to a dream deferred? Wilson's answer is riveting.

American Stage, Sept. 25-Oct. 11, 163 Third St. N, St. Petersburg, 727-823-PLAY, www.americanstage.org.

Read more CL's Fall Arts Preview.

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