Joe Wilson, Jr.

Combining Acting And Community Activism

Joe Wilson, Jr. has been a member of the Trinity Repertory Company for 11 seasons. He has also appeared in productions on Broadway, Off-Broadway, and throughout the country.

In his time at Trinity, Wilson has made significant contributions to the Providence community. He received the 2014 Volunteer of the Year Award from the Manton Avenue Project in Providence's Olneyville neighborhood, for recognition of his contributions as a guest artist, teacher, and board member.

He also received the 2012 Siseretta Jones Award for Cultural Literacy and the Arts from the Rhode Island Black Heritage Society, awarded for excellency in the arts and presented in recognition of those who have made outstanding contributions to the African American Community of Rhode Island. Wilson was also a featured artist in "Black Lavender," a Brown University exhibit sponsored by the Rhode Island Council for Humanities that highlighted the historical contributions of black gay men in Rhode Island.

Wilson also represented Trinity Rep as a writer for the 2015's "Every 28 Hours Project," a national partnership inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement that focused on the statistic that a black person is killed by the police every 28 hours in the US. "Every 28 Hours" consisted of 60-plus one-minute plays by playwrights from across the nation.

Wilson's roles have included Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (The Mountaintop), Jim Casey (The Grapes of Wrath), Duke of Albany (King Lear), Antonio (The Merchant of Venice), Lancelot (Camelot), Eugene (Yellowman), Emcee (Cabaret), Clarence (It’s a Wonderful Life), Orsino (Twelfth Night), Vinnie (The Odd Couple), Walter Lee (A Raisin in the Sun), Scrooge (A Christmas Carol), Willie Stark (All the King’s Men), El Gallo (The Fantasticks), Lopakin (The Cherry Orchard), Horatio (Hamlet).

Wilson appeared on Broadway in the 2000 Tony-nominated Jesus Christ Superstar, and Off-Broadway in the critically acclaimed Little Ham and Josephine’s Song. He has also appeared at regional productions at theaters including The Dallas Theater Center, North Shore Music Theatre, Syracuse Stage, Guthrie Theater, Ordway Music Theater, American Players Theatre, Penumbra Theatre, and New Rep. Theater.

A native of New Orleans, Wilson holds a BA in Political Science from the University of Notre Dame and an MFA in Acting from the University of Minnesota/Guthrie Theatre.