Keith David’s injury postpones Ebony Repertory’s ‘Paul Robeson’

Keith David, scheduled to debut in "Paul Robeson" this week at the Ebony Repertory Theatre in Los Angeles, has some swelling in his knee, which has postponed the opening.
(Alberto E. Rodriguez / Getty Images)

A new production of the Phillip Hayes Dean play “Paul Robeson” that was scheduled to open Friday in Los Angeles has been postponed due to an injury sustained by actor Keith David.

The play, a production by the Ebony Repertory Theatre at the Nate Holden Performing Arts Center, had its first preview performance on Wednesday. All subsequent performances have been put on hold until David recovers, according to the company.

The injury involves swelling to the actor’s knee, according to Wren T. Brown, the Ebony’s founder and producer. “Keith was crestfallen that he couldn’t do the show,” he said.

Brown said the company has postponed the play until further notice, but is hoping to reschedule the opening night to March 21, pending the actor’s recovery.


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“Paul Robeson,” which is being directed by the playwright, tells the story of the pioneering black stage and screen actor. The play was first performed on Broadway in 1978, with James Earl Jones in the title role.

The play is essentially a solo show with some music, performed by pianist Byron J. Smith. The run of the show was originally scheduled for March 12 to 30, with an opening on Friday.

David appeared last year in a revival of August Wilson’s “Joe Turner’s Come and Gone” at the Mark Taper Forum.



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