Is the new play “King James” about the NBA star? Award-winning director Kenny Leon says yes, but that’s not all.


Job :

The reign of “King” LeBron James in Cleveland brings promise, prosperity and renewal to a city that desperately needs all three. It also reunites two unlikely friends in a fandom-forged bond. Told over 12 years (from LeBron’s rookie season to an NBA championship), king james is an intimate exploration of the place sport has in our lives and relationships.

Ensemble member Rajiv Joseph’s clever, fast-paced comedy traces the arcs of two friends whose turbulent relationship is best navigated through their shared love of basketball and the endless amiable arguments that erupt from that love. All the while, the promise and burden of LeBron’s talent and legacy loom large.

king james the creative team includes Todd Rosenthal (stage design); Samantha C. Jones (Costume Design); Lee Fiskness (lighting design); Rob Milburn and Michael Bodeen (sound design); Sophiyaa Nayar (Associate Director); Polly Hubbard (Playwright); Gigi Buffington (corporate voice and text coach); Tom Pearl (production manager); JC Clementz, CSA (casting director); Laura D. Glenn (Production Stage Manager); and Jaclynn Joslin (assistant manager).

world premiere

king james

Per ensemble member Rajiv Joseph

Directed by Tony and Obie Award winner Kenny Leon

With member of the ensemble and artistic director Glenn Davis next to Chris Perfecti

In Steppenwolf’s Lower Theater

March 3 – April 10, 2022 for tickets.

KENNY LEON is a Tony and Obie Award-winning, Emmy-nominated Broadway and television director. Most recently, he directed Lifetime’s Emmy-nominated Robin Roberts Presents: Mahalia. Currently on Netflix, Kenny directed Edit: The fight for America, a six-part docuseries hosted by Will Smith. Last year he helmed the Tony Award-winning Broadway premiere of Charles Fuller’s Pulitzer Prize-winning masterpiece. A soldier’s game with Blair Underwood and David Alan Grier at the Roundabout Theater Company for which he also received a Best Director nomination. He also directed the acclaimed production of A lot of noise for nothing at the Delacorte/Shakespeare in the Park. His Broadway credits include the recent production of A soldier’s game, American son starring Kerry Washington and Steven Pasquale which has also been adapted for Netflix, the revival of Children of a lesser Godthe musical Tupac Holler if you hear me, A raisin in the sun with Denzel Washington (Tony Award for Best Direction of a Play and Best Revival of a Play), The top of the mountain with Samuel L. Jackson and Angela Bassett, Fly Stick produced by Alicia Keys, August Wilson’s Fences (which garnered ten Tony nominations and won three Tony Awards, including Best Revival of a Play), ocean gem and Radio Golfas well as A raisin in the sun with Sean “Diddy” Combs, Phylicia Rashad and Audra McDonald. He also led Intelligent people and The underlying Chris for the second step. Leon’s television work includes “Hairspray Live!” and “The Wiz Live!” on NBC. He recently published his memoirs Take you wherever you go. He is the recipient of the 2016 Mr. Abbott Lifetime Achievement Award and the 2010 Drama League Excellence in Directing Award. Mr. Leon serves on the Board of Directors of the Public Theater of New York and is Artistic Director Emeritus of Kenny Leon’s True Colors Theater Company of Atlanta. He is currently Senior Resident Director at the Roundabout Theater Company.


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