url25Denzel Washington is back on Broadway! He stars as Walter Lee Younger in a revival of Lorraine Hansberry’s classic “A Raisin In The Sun,” directed by Kenny Leon.  

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The Source Magazine spoke with Washington on the red carpet at the show’s after-party on April 3 at Tribeca Loft. Our exclusive interview is below:

Tell me about  returning to Broadway and why this was the project for you?  

Denzel Washington: Really it was Kenny Leon’s idea, I wanted to come back to Broadway, we talked about it as soon as we finished “Fences,” we talked about what we might do. He was like “We should do Raisin in the Sun,” I was like “Really?” because he had just directed it on Broadway 10 years ago, I didn’t know if he wanted to do it again but I was happy he did.
Tell me about collaborating with Kenny and what do you admire about him as a director?
Denzel Washington: He’s giving, there’s no ego involved, he’s great, he shapes the play, he allows it to breathe, and he doesn’t get ahead of it, get in front of it, it’s not about him. It’s about the actors and it’s about the material and you look up and he gives just the right notes, just enough to nudge you in the right direction and things like that.
What was it about Walter that is so special?
Denzel Washington: It’s a great play,  Lorraine Hansberry wrote a great play that Sidney Poitier, Ruby Dee and all of them did back in the day. Any great play, be it Shakespeare or August Wilson, or Lorraine Hansberry, any actor worth his salt wants to get the opportunity to interpret these roles and I had to hurry up and do it before I got too old and here I am, and I’m having a great time.
Can you tell me about speaking with Mr. Sidney Poitier. Did he give you any advice for this role?
Denzel Washington: We just had great talks, and I look forward to getting back and seeing him. He’s going to come here, I’ll make sure of that, and see the play and I won’t say he’s mentor, but over the years I had the chance to talk to him from time to time and ask him questions. Because he’s walked the steps that I’m walking now.
Tell me about your passion for theater and why it’s so alluring to you as an actor?

Denzel Washington: It’s where I started, it’s my first love professionally and so that’s what I always wanted to do, and once I became an actor, I learned to act on the stage and I remember seeing James Earl Jones doing Oedipus the King at St. John the Divine Cathedral and I was like, “Wow, that’s what I want to do,” and so here I am.

The show also stars Latanya Richardson Jackson, Sophie Okonedo, Anika Noni Rose, Stephen Mckinley Henderson, David Cromer, Bryce Clyde Jenkins, Jason Dirden, and Sean Patrick Thomas and is now playing at the Barrymore Theatre.

For more information visit: http://ppc.broadway.com/shows/raisin-sun/

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Shaina lives, breathes and sleeps entertainment.

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