Honor Black History Month this February by joining us for our first August Wilson Reading Challenge! Starting February 1, we’re celebrating Wilson’s legacy and gearing up for our eleventh year of the August Wilson Monologue Competition by challenging our community to read all ten plays in Wilson’s American Century Cycle.
How to Participate
It's easy to join the challenge!
- Read August Wilson's full 10-play American Century Cycle over the month of February.
- Let us know why you chose to participate and why Wilson’s work is important today. You can submit your answers* through video, audio, written mediums, drawing, photography, etc. Send your answers to AWChallenge@seattlerep.org, or share them across social media with the hashtag #AWChallenge.
*We’ll be sharing some of your responses on Seattle Rep’s Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter, as well as on our blog, Inside Seattle Rep.
All of August Wilson’s scripts are published and widely available at libraries and bookstores.
Find scripts at the Seattle Public Library:
seattle public library
All SPL locations are currently closed to limit the spread of COVID-19. Many locations offer curbside services up to 5 days per week. Find locations and hours for curbside services and returns at www.spl.org/Curbside.
Support a local Black/Brown-owned bookstore by purchasing the scripts through Estelita’s Library's online store:
Purchase scripts from other Black-owned bookstores nationwide:
We held three opportunities to dive deeper into Wilson's works with the August Wilson Reading Challenge Book Club, where patrons engaged in casual discussion sessions each week to connect over Wilson's American Century Cycle of plays and gain more insight into his work. During each session, the group discussed a few plays within the Cycle and how they connect to each other thematically.
Regarding the Past: Something to be Used, Cherished, or Forgotten
February 12 from 5-6 p.m. PT
- Gem of the Ocean
- Radio Golf
- The Piano Lesson
A Dream Deferred: Believing in the Midst of Turmoil
February 19 from 5-6 p.m. PT
- Seven Guitars
- King Hedley
- Ma Rainey's Black Bottom
Breaking Generational Trauma and Strongholds
February 26 from 5-6 p.m. PT
- Joe Turner's Come and Gone
- Two Trains Running
Known as the "American Shakespeare," August Wilson is recognized as one of the most influential playwrights of our time.
The American Century CycleMORE
Wilson’s 10-play American Century Cycle explores the heritage and experience of African Americans, decade by decade, over the course of the 20th century.
The August Wilson Monologue CompetitionMORE
Calling all high school-aged students! Now in its 11th year at Seattle Rep, the same great competition we know and love is back and taking the virtual stage.
Did you know...?
Seattle Rep was an artistic home to Wilson for many years until his untimely passing in 2005. Read on to learn some little-known facts about the playwright, his work, and time at Seattle Rep.
Carlton Byrd in Two Trains Running (2018). Photo by Nate Watters.