Arts and the Hill District: Past and Present
The Hill District of Pittsburgh has a rich cultural and arts heritage,earning the distinction “crossroads of the the world” by Harlem Renaissance poet Claude McKay. In the years preceding World War I, the Hill District developed as a major center for jazz. More recently, it brought us the Pulitzer-winning playwright August Wilson, who framed nine plays about the African-American experience within this community. Unfortunately, the Hill District has faced economic decline since post World War II development efforts. Some revitalization initiatives have celebrated the Hill District’s history and incorporate arts programming and education. Edwin Lee Gibson discusses the Hill District and its arts scene, past and current. Mr Gibson is a celebrated actor and playwright. He currently serves as Director of the Hill House Association’s Kaufmann Center, the organization’s arts hub.