small text medium text large text

Pulitzer Prize-Winning Playwright Suzan-Lori Parks to Speak at Drue Heinz Lectures

Contact: Susan Corbett
Phone: 412.622.8866
Fax: 412.688.8617

For Immediate Release

January 27, 2006 . . . Winner of both the Pulitzer Prize for Drama as well as a MacArthur "Genius" award, playwright Suzan-Lori Parks will appear in Pittsburgh at Carnegie Music Hall in Oakland on Monday, February 6, at 7:30 p.m. as part of The Drue Heinz Lectures spring season.

In 2002, Parks made history as the first African-American woman playwright to win a Pulitzer Prize for Drama with her brilliant play Topdog/Underdog, a dark comedy of sibling rivalry, resentment, and healing (staged at Pittsburgh's City Theatre in 2004). A prolific writer, Parks has also written a novel, Getting Mother's Body, the screenplay for Spike Lee's film Girl 6, and an adaptation of Toni Morrison's novel Paradise for Oprah Winfrey's production studio.

A self-labeled "Army brat," Parks was born in Kentucky and attended high school in Germany, where her father was based. At Mount Holyoke College she studied writing with acclaimed writer James Baldwin, who encouraged her to turn her short stories into plays. In addition to the Pulitzer, Parks has won a prestigious Whiting Writers' Award and a Guggenheim, received grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Rockefeller Foundation, and won two Obie awards for best Off-Broadway Play.

Pittsburgh Arts & Lectures' Drue Heinz Lecture Series presents today's most important and informed writers and commentators. Also scheduled to appear this spring are controversial and provocative philosopher Daniel C. Dennett, author of Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon (2/20); Frank McCourt, author of Pulizer-Prize winning Angela's Ashes and his new book, Teacher Man (3/6); Robert Sapolsky, professor of biology and neurology at Stanford and a MacArthur "Genius" fellow (3/20); and acclaimed novelist Sue Monk Kidd, author of runaway bestseller The Secret Life of Bees and her new novel The Mermaid Chair (4/10).

For information and tickets call (412) 622-8866. Single tickets are available, with discounts for groups and students. The Drue Heinz Lectures is presented by Pittsburgh Arts & Lectures in association with Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh and is sponsored by The Drue Heinz Trust. The series' media sponsor is DUQ 90.5 FM.