Multimedia: Opening Night of Alice Childress’s WINE IN THE WILDERNESS Starring Crystal A. Dickinson, Brittany Bellizeare, Ricardy Fabre, Korey Jackson, Keith Randolph Smith at Two River Theater; Performances through Nov. 6

Events, Performances, Photography, Theater

Two River Theater in Red Bank, NJ. Photo by Lia Chang

Last Friday, I took the NJ Transit train to Red Bank, NJ for the opening night performance of Two River Theater’s production of Wine in the Wilderness, written by Drama Desk Award winner Alice Childress and directed by Obie Award winner Brandon J. Dirden (director of August Wilson’s Radio Golf and King Hedley II). Two River Theater is located at 21 Bridge Avenue, Red Bank, NJ 07701.

Crystal A. Dickinson, Lia Chang and Brandon J. Dirden. Photo by Joey Orlando

Crystal A. Dickinson (Broadway’s Clybourne Park, Two River’s Raisin in the Sun and August Wilson’s Seven Guitars) leads the cast as Tommy opposite Korey Jackson (Two River’s The School for Wives, The Hot Wing King) as Bill Jameson. The cast also features Brittany Bellizeare as Cynthia, Ricardy Fabre (The Christians, A Raisin in the Sun) as Sonny-Man, and Keith Randolph Smith (Spike Lee’s Malcolm X, Broadway’s August Wilson’s Jitney and American Psycho) as Oldtimer.

Performances continue through Nov. 6.

Check out my photo and video coverage, which includes the final curtain call thank you speech by Two River Theater’s Managing Director Michael Durst and Artistic Director John Dias at the 14:23 mark. This episode of BACKSTAGE PASS with Lia Chang, which also features the Broadway revival of Death of a Salesman and the opening reception of Black is Beautiful: The Photography of Kwame Brathwaite, will air on Sunday, October 30 at 6:30pm on FIOS 34, RCN 83, and Spectrum 56/1996.

Set in 1964 during the race riots in Harlem, this reflection on how art truly reflects life focuses on artist Bill Jameson and his latest work, three paintings representing three types of Black womanhood. More than his artistic vision is challenged by the arrival of an unexpected muse who refuses to be bound by his shallow assumptions of all that Black womanhood can be.

Keith Randolph Smith, Korey Jackson, Crystal A. Dickinson, Brittany Bellizeare and Ricardy Fabre. Photo by Lia Chang

Playwright Alice Childress is often described as a groundbreaking artist because she was the only African American woman to have written, produced, and published plays for four decades. Actress and activist Ruby Dee, who starred in the 1974 film adaption of Alice Childress’ Wedding Band says, “Alice Childress is a splendid playwright, a veteran-indeed, a pioneer.”

Keith Randolph Smith, Korey Jackson, Crystal A. Dickinson, Brittany Bellizeare and Ricardy Fabre. Photo by Lia Chang

The creative team includes Kaja Dunn, Intimacy Coordinator, Alex Murphy, Stage Manager, Natalie Jones, Assistant Stage Manager, Nikiya Mathis, Wig Designer, Richard H. Morris, Scenic Designer, Kathy A. Perkins, Lighting Designer, Karen Perry, Costume Designer, Kay Richardson, Sound Designer, and Caity Mulkearns, Associate Costume Designer.

Two River’s Managing Director Michael Hurst, and Artistic Director John Dias giving their final curtain call thank you speech at Two River Theater on October 21, 2022. Photo by Lia Chang

Two River’s Managing Director Michael Hurst, and Artistic Director John Dias, Keith Randolph Smith, Korey Jackson, Crystal A. Dickinson, Brittany Bellizeare and Ricardy Fabre. Photo by Lia Chang

Keith Randolph Smith, Korey Jackson, Crystal A. Dickinson, Brittany Bellizeare and Ricardy Fabre. Photo by Lia Chang

Keith Randolph Smith, Korey Jackson, Crystal A. Dickinson, Brittany Bellizeare and Ricardy Fabre. Photo by Lia Chang

Two River’s Managing Director Michael Hurst, and Artistic Director John Dias, Keith Randolph Smith, Korey Jackson, Crystal A. Dickinson, Brittany Bellizeare and Ricardy Fabre. Photo by Lia Chang

Keith Randolph Smith, Director Brandon J. Dirden, Korey Jackson, Crystal A. Dickinson, Brittany Bellizeare and Ricardy Fabre. Photo by Lia Chang

Deborah and Willie Dirden. Photo by Lia Chang

John Dias and Charlie Hudson III. Photo by Lia Chang

Two River Theater Managing Director Michael Hurst, Michael Cumpsty, John Dias and a guest. Photo by Lia Chang

The Dirden-Dickinson clan. Photo by Lia Chang

Korey Jackson, Brittany Bellizeare, Ricardy Fabre, Crystal A. Dickinson, Brandon J. Dirden, Two River Theater Artistic Director John Dias. Photo by Lia Chang

Korey Jackson, Brittany Bellizeare, Ricardy Fabre, Crystal A. Dickinson, Brandon J. Dirden, Two River Theater Artistic Director John Dias. Photo by Lia Chang

Crystal A. Dickinson and Joan Rechnitz. Photo by Lia Chang

Click below for tickets.

Post-Play Discussion 3:00 PM
   8:00 PM
3:00 PM
Post-Play Discussion 1:00 PM
7:00 PM
8:00 PM
8:00 PM
SAT, NOV 5 / 2022
AD OC 3:00 PM
8:00 PM
3:00 PM

Lia Chang

Lia Chang is an actor, a multi-media content producer, activist and an Award winning filmmaker and co-founder of Bev’s Girl Films, making films that foster inclusion and diversity on both sides of the camera. Lia is also the host and Executive Producer of BACKSTAGE PASS WITH LIA CHANG, a new Arts and Entertainment program that airs on Sundays at 6:30pm on FIOS 34, RCN 83, and Spectrum 56/1996.

Bev’s Girl Films’ debut short film, Hide and Seek was a top ten film in the Asian American Film Lab’s 2015 72 Hour Shootout Filmmaking Competition, and she received a Best Actress nomination. Her short film, When the World Was Young recently garnered a 2021 DisOrient Film Audience Choice Award for Best Short Narrative. Lia has appeared in the films Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, The Last Dragon, Taxman. She stars in and served as Executive Producer for the short independent films Hide and Seek, Balancing Act, Rom-Com Gone Wrong, Belongingness and When the World was Young. She is also the Executive Producer for The Cactus, The Language Lesson, The Writer and Cream and 2 Shugahs. BGF collaborates with and produces multi-media content for artists, actors, designers, theatrical productions, composers, musicians and corporations.

All text, graphics, articles & photographs: © 2000-2022 Lia Chang Multimedia. All rights reserved. All materials contained on this site are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of Lia Chang, unless otherwise indicated. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content. For permission, please contact Lia at backstagepasswithliachang@gmail.com

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s