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The Piano Lesson (1995)

1930's Pittsburgh, a brother comes home to claim "my half of the piano", a family heirloom; but his sister is not wanting to part with it. This is a glimpse of the conditions for ... See full summary »

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(play), (teleplay)
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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 4 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Boy Willie (as Charles Dutton)
...
Carl Gordon ...
Doaker
Tommy Hollis ...
Avery
...
Wining Boy
...
Lymon
...
Maretha
...
Grace
Tommy Lafitte ...
Ace
Lynne Innerst ...
Miss Ophelia
Harold Surratt ...
Papa Willie Boy
Elva Branson ...
Mama Berniece
Tim Hartman ...
Sutter
Ben Tatar ...
Watermelon Man
Alice Eisner ...
Watermelon Lady (as Alice Gerber Eisner)
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Storyline

1930's Pittsburgh, a brother comes home to claim "my half of the piano", a family heirloom; but his sister is not wanting to part with it. This is a glimpse of the conditions for African-Americans as well as some of the attitudes and influences on their lives. But whether he is able to sell the piano so that he can get enough money to buy some property and "no longer have to work for someone else" involves the story (or lesson) that the piano has to show him. Written by BOB STEBBINS <stebinsbob@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

To their family, it meant more than a piano... it was their legacy and their future.

Genres:

Drama | Music

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for thematic elements | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

5 February 1995 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Hallmark Hall of Fame: The Piano Lesson (#44.2)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Charles S. Dutton was nominated for the 1990 Tony Award (New York City) for Actor in a Drama for "The Piano Lesson" for the role of Boy Willie and recreated it in this production. See more »

Goofs

When Doaker, Wining Boy, Boy Willie and Lymon are sitting at the kitchen table drinking and singing, the level of alcohol rises in their glasses and the bottles between shots. See more »

Connections

Edited into Hallmark Hall of Fame (1951) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A family's past or its future - which is more important?
23 October 2006 | by (Chicago, IL United States) – See all my reviews

This play is not as simple as it first appears. There is great complexity in all of the major characters, especially in Bernice. And the use of the 'jazz set' model instead of the traditional Aristotelian'plot graph' makes all the difference! The language of the play is music itself, and eventually erupts into song. This is a wonderful debate on the importance of the past and the future in the lives of these characters, symbolized by the piano which has been passed down through the family. A cast full of excellent actors brings it to life. Loved it! I hope 'The Piano Lesson' and the other plays in Wilson's ten-play cycle will soon be available on film.


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