A Raisin in the Sun

Aug 20, 2013 - Dec 7, 2013

This powerful drama “changed American theater forever” (The New York Times) and resonates across generations — recently serving as inspiration for the Pulitzer Prize-winning Clybourne Park. An African-American family living in a crowded apartment on Chicago’s South Side during the 1950s believes that a better life is just around the corner. But they are challenged when their plan to buy a home in the Clybourne Park neighborhood is thwarted by racial intolerance. This award-winning play celebrates faith, courage and the human spirit, even as it spotlights divides that still plague Chicago more than 50 years after its premiere.


Production Team


* Member of Actors Equity Association

# Member of United Scenic Artists

~ Member of Stage Directors and Choreographers Society

+ TimeLine Company Member

^ TimeLine Associate Artist

§ TimeLine Playwrights Collective


  • Chicago Tribune

    August 30, 2013

    4 STARS. “An immersive, intimate, visceral, local, emotional, superbly acted production … [A Raisin in the Sun] has never had a comparable, all-out, revisionist, Chicago-style staging; it has been patiently waiting, and deserving, these past 58 years … there is no better moment to stand behind its glories again.”

    —Chris Jones

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  • Chicago Sun-Times

    August 30, 2013

    HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. “Hansberry’s A Raisin in the Sun [is] more searing than ever at TimeLine … working in what can only be described as TimeLine’s “magical space” (enhanced by Brian Sidney Bembridge’s richly environmental set), the play sounds notes both familiar and entirely fresh.

    —Hedy Weiss

  • TimeOut Chicago

    August 28, 2013

    5 STARS. “Ron OJ Parson’s expertly staged, ideally cast revival of Lorraine Hansberry’s American classic arrives at a moment that proves the play can still surprise … TimeLine Theatre Company’s impressively vital new revival seems to hit every note … while coming with some remarkable resonances of its own.

    —Kris Vire

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  • Chicago Theater Beat

    August 30, 2013

    4 STARS. “With every minute a revelation conveyed with conviction and received with delight, Ron OJ Parson’s devoted staging recreates the Younger family in 1950 from the inside out … Theater can do no more than be this true. It’s up to you to return the compliment.

    —Lawrence Bommer

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  • Chicago Theatre Review

    August 31, 2013

    HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. “Ron OJ Parson’s direction is flawless and natural. His staging is so realistic as to imagine the characters are acting instinctively within the restricted apartment environment. Brian Sidney Bembridge’s scenic and lighting design handsomely transforms the intimate Wellington Avenue theatre space into the Younger’s tiny apartment, creating just enough space amongst their modest furnishings for an audience to sit and witness this heartbreaking story … thought-provoking, thoroughly riveting … this might be the best time and setting for this much-welcome production of a great play.

    —Peter Thomas Ricci

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  • Dueling Critics

    August 30, 2013

    “The production of this well-known play is spectacular … the entire ensemble is so excellent … this is truly one of [Ron OJ Parson’s] finest productions.”

    —Kelly Kleiman and Jonathan Abarbanel

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  • Chicago Critic

    August 30, 2013

    HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. “It is a classic work marvelously performed on Brian Sidney Bembridge’s realistic set in the intimate TimeLine Theatre. I could smell the bacon cooking… and I could feel the Younger’s pain and their joy. This play is one of the best of 2013 – don’t miss it!

    —Tom Williams

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  • Daily Herald

    September 6, 2013

    3 1/2 STARS. “[A] superb revival … All of the performances are carefully calibrated and deeply felt. That’s especially true of the brilliant Oglesby and Haynes, who draw from a seemingly bottomless well of emotion. And yet there is a wonderful subtlety to this cast, who convey through their fleeting, knowing expressions as much as they do when they utter Hansberry’s words.”

    —Barbara Vitello

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  • Chicago Reader

    September 4, 2013

    RECOMMENDED. “In his vivid and admirably unsentimental staging, director Ron OJ Parson stays true to the script’s kitchen-sink realism without layering on so many period details that the play seems a relic of the past. There’s a 50s jazz soundtrack and at one point the smell of frying bacon, but touches like these never distract from the intensity and veracity of the performances—allowing us to appreciate, in case we had forgotten, the full power of Hansberry’s still-moving, still-contemporary masterpiece.”

    —Zac Thompson

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  • Windy City Times

    September 1, 2013

    “This year has seen a number of classroom classics re-imagined to breathe new life and significance into familiar 20th-century masterworks. You may have seen Hansberry’s groundbreaking crossover hit before—indeed, it’s rare not to have—but this is the one you will remember.

    —Mary Shen Barnidge

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  • Showbiz Chicago

    August 30, 2013

    “Under the direction of Ron OJ Parson, with a talented cast and flawless set design this classic is once again brought back to a Chicago stage and performed with all the passion and perfection it deserves … I cannot recommend A Raisin in the Sun at TimeLine enough and urge you to go see it.

    —Michael Roberts

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  • Chicago Splash

    August 30, 2013

    If you think you already know the story and that you’ve already seen it – think again. Like many TimeLine productions of classics, this production defines WHY it is a classic in all senses of the word.”

    —Amy Munice

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  • Berkshire Fine Arts

    September 1, 2013

    “Timeline takes brilliant advantage of its limitations to produce an irresistible staging of Lorraine Hansberry’s classic … It does not preach, but by presenting many different dilemmas teaches well in this compelling TimeLine Production.

    —Susan Hall

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  • Around the Town Chicago

    FOUR STARS. “TimeLine Theatre Company (just the mention of their name brings a knowing smile to most Chicago theater-goers) is known for telling stories that are powerful and historical and doing it quite well … This is a strong cast and the ensemble players that have been assembled prove that in a story it is the quality of the players that make it take on the meaning that the playwright had.

    —Alan Bresloff

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  • Chicago on the Aisle

    September 25, 2013

    FOUR STARS. “The disturbing thing about Lorraine Hansberry’s 1959 play, A Raisin in the Sun, a sharply drawn portrait of America’s racial divide and one black family’s resolve to cross that chasm, is how current it still feels in the season-opening production at TimeLine Theatre, potently and humanely crafted by director Ron OJ Parson.

    —Lawrence B. Johnson

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  • Chicago Crusader

    “I love A Raisin in the Sun and a staging of it is in full swing at TimeLine … This play is a ‘must see’ and worth the trip to TimeLine Theatre on the North Side.

Discussions & Events

  • Sunday Scholars Series
    Sunday, September 27 from 4:30 - 5:30 pm

    SUNDAY SCHOLARS PANEL DISCUSSION featuring guest speakers with expertise and experience related to the themes of A Raisin in the Sun

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