King Hedley II -- the eighth work in Wilsons 10-play cycle about blacks in 20th-century America -- focuses on a group of characters living in the Hill in 1985, when Reaganomics and crack plagued the onetime cultural center. The title character spends much of the play trying to make ends meet. Others search for forgiveness amid disappointment, violence, and a social shift. Although rap music is never mentioned in the play, says Smith, you can feel that rhythm bubbling up from the heated frustrations of African Americans who have never been extended the dream of America.
Thursdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 3 p.m. Starts: May 25. Continues through June 17