“A Soldier’s Play,” Charles Fuller’s Pulitzer Prize-winning 1981 drama about racism in the American military, won the Tony Award for best revival of a play.
The play starred Blair Underwood, an Army captain who investigates the murder of a Black sergeant near an Army base in Louisiana in 1944. The play, which opened in January 2020, received seven Tony nominations, the most of any play revival.
Accepting the award, the play’s director Kenny Leon said the names of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd, two Black people killed by the police last year, saying, “We will never, ever forget you.” He went on to speak about the lack of diversity among the most decorated playwrights.
“No diss to Shakespeare, no diss to Ibsen, to Chekhov, to Shaw — they’re all at the table,” Leon said. “But the table’s got to be bigger.”
“We need to hear all of the stories,” he went on. “When we hear all of the stories, we are better.”
Earlier in the night, David Alan Grier, who plays the murdered sergeant, won a Tony for best featured actor in a play. After he accepted his award, Grier spoke to reporters about the devastation of the past 18 months and his relief to see Broadway returning.
“I lost faith, I gained faith, I lost faith, I gained faith,” he said. “Finally there was a path forward, and I’m just happy for everyone.”
Deadline reported earlier this week that “A Soldier’s Play” will get a television adaptation centered on Grier’s character.
This award was the only top category for revival of a show this year; there were no musical revivals that qualified.
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