Lydia Diamond Interviews Kenny Leon

by:  Todd Williams at 02/11/2010

This season at the Huntington, we are telling seven distinct American stories. To tease out the connections between the shows, we’ve asked artists from different productions to interview each other about their work. Below, playwright Lydia R. Diamond (Stick Fly) talks with Stick Fly director Kenny Leon.

    Lydia Diamond: Kenny, I don’t think you remember how we met.
    Kenny Leon: I don’t remember exactly how we met, but it seems as though I’ve known you for a long time, like twenty years though I know that’s not true.
    L: I’m going to tell you how I met you. It was after Gem of the Ocean at the Goodman, and it was in that restaurant attached to the Goodman. I was with [director and producer] Woodie King, Jr. and [director] Chuck Smith, and you came in and joined us for the latter half of dinner. That’s how I met you.
    K: Oh wow.
    L: But, I was so young that you wouldn’t know it was me. I had just my first show produced at the Goodman. The Gift Horseopened in the Owen while Regina Taylor’s Drowning Crow was running, and then I think Gem was after Drowning Crow. Then, I met you [again] at the Huntington’s production of Gem, at the cast party.
    K: By that time I was directing the show.
    L: The first time I got to spend time with you was when True Colors had me up to do a reading of Stick Fly before you produced it.
    K: It’s like I’ve been knowing you all the while.
    L: Yeah, we’ve got it like that. . . . How did August Wilson influence your early career? Before you even got to work with him… 

Lydia and Kenny go on to talk about August Wilson, working with dramaturgs, finding truth onstage, working in Boston and much much more. Read the unabridged interview here.


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Lisa Timmel,  Bevin O'Gara, and Charles Haugland share their thoughts on New Plays, Dramatury, and their experience sharing nightly conversations with the audiences that come to see our shows. Get the inside scoop of new scripts and play development!

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