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‘The Suzan-Lori Parks Show’

The first African-American woman to win the Pulitzer Prize for drama to perform at Kingsbury Hall on Feb. 24 at 6 p.m.

Part lecture, part reading, part sing-a-long and part consciousness-raising, “The Suzan-Lori Parks Show” comes to the University of Utah’s Kingsbury Hall on Wednesday, Feb. 24 at 6 p.m. Playwright and Pulitzer prize-winning dramatist, Suzan-Lori Parks will deliver the 2016 David P. Gardner Lecture in the Humanities and Fine Arts and serve as the 2016 Tanner Humanities Center Artist in Residence.

suzan-lori-parks“Suzan-Lori Parks catches and holds our attention with her choice of subjects, word play, imagery and amazing staging,” said Obert C. & Grace A. Tanner Humanities Center Director and history professor Bob Goldberg. “She asks us to think deeply about ourselves as a people – how does history, the present, shape our tomorrow.”

Named one of TIME magazine’s “100 Innovators for the Next New Wave,” Parks is one of the most exciting and acclaimed playwrights in American drama today. She is the first African-American woman to receive the Pulitzer Prize in Drama for the Broadway hit “Topdog/ Underdog” and is a MacArthur “Genius” Award recipient. She has also received grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Rockefeller Foundation and the Ford Foundation. She is the recipient of a Lila-Wallace Reader’s Digest Award, a CalArts/Alpert Award in the Arts (Drama) for “1996” and a Guggenheim Foundation Grant. Her work is the subject of the PBS film “The Topdog Diaries” and she was recently awarded the prestigious Dorothy and Lillian Gish Prize.

“No work produced by an English language dramatist of our time surpasses Suzan-Lori Parks for depth, complexity, poetry, originality, insight and stunning dramatic power,” said fellow Pulitzer Prize winner Tony Kushner.

In line with its mission to “promote humanistic inquiry and exchange” to all, this event is free and open to the public. Parks will perform for 50 minutes followed by a Q&A and book signing co-hosted by The King’s English Bookshop.

Parks will also meet with select members of campus and the community, and host a private theatre workshop for 30 students and faculty from the Department of Theatre and student scholars from the University of Utah The MUSE Project.  Tickets are required – to reserve a seat, please visit

This event is made possible in part by support from the University of Utah’s College of Fine Arts, Tanner Lectures on Human Values, The MUSE Project, Office for Equity and Diversity, College of Humanities, Pete Ashdown of XMission and Zoo, Arts & Parks – Salt Lake County.