`Turner' magnetic but not magical

Theater review

December 15, 2007|By Nelson Pressley | Nelson Pressley,Special to the Sun

The ache of history rips through Joe Turner's Come and Gone, the August Wilson drama set in 1911. The characters who pass through the play's Pittsburgh boarding house are lonely wanderers, searching for connections ruptured by an oppression that didn't end with slavery.

"Make his feet say my name on the road," pleads a woman who yearns for her husband to come back. At Center Stage, which is offering this sweeping drama for the second time, scenic designer Neil Patel's boarding house set is both a way station and a kind of crossroads. The busy kitchen and living room sit at right angles, and at the intersection, nearly everyone seems to be seeking direction.

If you go Joe Turner's Come and Gone runs at Center Stage, 700 N. Calvert St., through Jan. 13. 8 p.m. Tuesdays-Fridays; 2 p.m., 8 p.m. Saturdays (1 p.m. Dec. 26); 2 p.m., 7:30 p.m. Sundays. $10-$60. 410-332-0033 or centerstage.org.

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