fences-home-slide“One of the richest experiences I have ever had in the theatre. I wasn’t just moved. I was transfixed.” — NY Post

By August Wilson

Directed by Eric C. Engel

Cast to include: Jared Michael Brown, Warren Jackson*, Gregory Marlow*, Daver Morrison*, Jermel Nakia*, and Jacqui Parker*

This sensational drama starred James Earl Jones as Troy Maxson, a former star of the Negro baseball leagues who now works as a garbage man in 1957 Pittsburgh. Excluded from the major leagues during his prime, Troy’s bitterness takes its toll on his relationships with his wife and his son, who now wants his own chance to play ball.

Running time: about 2 hours and 45 minutes (including one 15 minute intermission)

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Director/Artistic Director Eric Engel
Stage Manager Marsha Smith*
Costume Designer Molly Trainer**
Lighting Designer Russ Swift**
Set Designer Michael Griggs**
Props Master Joe Stallone
Production Assistants Joe Fanning, Brendan Marr

“…raw, relevant…clear-eyed direction…beautifully realized…” Jeremy D. Goodwin, The Boston Globe

“…an insightful and nuanced production…[director Eric C.] Engel has done Wilson’s difficult script proud…the cast performs admirably…”               – Robert Israel, The ArtsFuse

“…a solid base hit…It is the universality of the situations faced by the protagonist that gives the play its power, and it is the
power of these performances that gives the Gloucester Stage production its emotional resonance.” – Nancy Grossman, BroadwayWorld.com



“One of the great characters in American drama. One of the richest experiences I have ever had in the theatre. I wasn’t just moved. I was transfixed.”—New York Post

“A blockbuster and a major American play.” —New York Daily News

Fences first opened at the Yale Repertory Theatre in New Haven, Connecticut on April 30, 1985. Directed by Lloyd Richards.

Like all of Wilson’s Pittsburgh plays, Fences explores the evolving African-American experience and examines race relations, among other themes. The play won the 1987 Pulitzer Prize for Drama and the 1987 Tony Award for Best Play.

Fences premiered on Broadway at the 46th Street Theatre on March 26, 1987 and closed on June 26, 1988 after 525 performances and 11 previews. Directed by Lloyd Richards, the cast featured James Earl Jones (Troy Maxson), Mary Alice (Rose), Ray Aranha (Jim Bono), Frankie R. Faison (Gabriel), and Courtney B. Vance (Cory).

The production won the Tony Awards for Best Play, Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Play (James Earl Jones), Best Performance by a Featured Actress in a Play (Mary Alice), and Best Direction of a Play (Lloyd Richards), as well as the Drama Desk Awards for Outstanding New Play, Outstanding Actor in a Play (Jones), and Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play (Alice). It also received Tony Award nominations for Best Featured Actor in a Play (Faison and Vance).

The first Broadway revival of the play opened at the Cort Theatre on April 26, 2010 with a limited 13-week engagement. Directed by Kenny Leon, the production starred Denzel Washington (Troy Maxson) and Viola Davis (Rose) as the married couple struggling with changing U.S. race relations.  The revival was nominated for ten Tony Awards, winning three for Best Revival of a Play, Best Actor in a Play (Denzel Washington), and Best Actress in a Play (Viola Davis).

In 2013 the play was revived by Theatre Royal Bath in the UK, starring Lenny Henry as Troy Maxson and directed by Paulette Randall. This production transferred to the Duchess Theatre in London’s West End for a run that lasted between June and September 2013.

Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Play (1987)

Pulitzer Prize for Drama (1987)

Tony Award for Best Play (1987)

Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Revival of a Play (2010)

Tony Award for Best Revival of a Play (2010)

Aug. 21–Sept. 7

8PM Wed, Thu, Fri & Sat

3PM Sat & 4PM Sun

Sunday Talk Backs
Sunday, August 24 at 4PM

Join actors and directors for discussions.

Pay What You Can Performance
Saturday, August 23 at 3PM

At door, day of show only. Limited availability. Supported in part by grants from the Essex, Rockport & Gloucester Cultural Councils, local agencies supported by state agency Massachusetts Cultural Council.

Cape Ann Nights
Wednesday & Thursday Performances.

Residents of Gloucester, Rockport, Essex and Manchester: $20. Proof of residency required. Limit 2 per household.

View/Download the FENCES Playbill

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* member of Actor’s Equity Association
** member of United Scenic Artists (USA-Locat 829)
*** member of Stage Directors and Choreographers Society (SDC)