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The Piano Lesson Summary
August Wilson

Everything you need to understand or teach The Piano Lesson by August Wilson.

  • The Piano Lesson Summary & Study Guide
  • 1 Encyclopedia Article
  • ...and more
  • 30 The Piano Lesson Lessons
  • 20 Activities
  • 180 Multiple Choice Questions
  • 60 Short Essay Questions
  • 20 Essay Questions
  • Pre-Made Tests and Quizzes
  • ...and more

The Piano Lesson Summary

Introduction

The Piano Lesson is the fourth of August Wilson's cycle of plays about the African American experience in the twentieth century. It opened at the Yale Repertory Theater in 1987, and, later, on Broadway, to great success.

The play was inspired by Romare Bearden's painting Piano Lesson. It is set in Pittsburgh in 1936 and focuses upon the relationship between the Charles siblings, Berniece and Boy Willie, who clash over whether or not their family's piano should be sold. In the mid-nineteenth century, when the Charles family were slaves, two members of the family were sold by their owners, the Sutters, for a piano. Subsequently, a master-carpenter in the Charles family was ordered by the Sutters to carve the faces of the sold slaves into the piano. He did that and more: he carved the family's entire history into the piano. The instrument was later stolen by Berniece and Boy Willie's...

(read more from the Study Guide)

Study Pack

The The Piano Lesson Study Pack contains about 87 pages of study material in 4 products, including:

The Piano Lesson Study Guide

Lesson Plan

All teaching products sold separately.

The Piano Lesson Lesson Plans contain 152 pages of teaching material, including:

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