Reviews

We Stopped Talking

Pharus (Jeremy Pope) is the bright and confident lead singer in the Charles R. Drew Prep School for Boys’ prestigious choir.  He has a quick, endearing smile, and he makes little effort to temper his flamboyant body language.  A few minutes into Choir Boy, and a few verses into Pharus’ solo at the school’s commencement, […]

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Reviews

Learn, Learn, Learn

Were it not for its anachronisms, the opening of Jeremy O. Harris’ Slave Play might read like an ugly exploitation movie from the ‘seventies.  Overseer Jim (Paul Alexander Nolan) interrupts Kaneisha (Teyonah Parris) while she’s twerking to Rihanna’s “Work” and rapes her.  Meanwhile, Alana (Annie McNamara), a bored and thirsty housewife, summons her husband’s light-skinned […]

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Reviews

I Dream of Fish

Undine Barnes Calles (Cherise Boothe) is a boutique public relations executive catering to the Black bourgeoisie.  She wears gold jackets and leopard-print coats; her hair rests atop her head like a crown.  When the play opens, she is sitting behind her desk, barking orders at her assistant (Nikiya Mathis) and scrambling to find a celebrity […]

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Reviews

A Nightly Savonarola, Monday through Friday

The set for Network is spectacular.  On the left side of the stage is a television studio, the crew working noiselessly inside a series of glass booths.  On the right is a working bar and restaurant, one patronized not only by the play’s characters but by some of the audience, whose seats are onstage and not […]

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Reviews

A Rival Hypothesis

Tom Stoppard is a giant, a playwright whose enormous talent has endured for decades: Arcadia, written almost thirty years after he first experimented with a one-act titled Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Meet King Lear, is among his best work.  The Hard Problem, his latest, is not.  It pains me to write this, since Stoppard is an idol […]

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Reviews

The Whole Place Is Changing

Sometimes death takes years.  Gladys Green (Elaine May) is a former lawyer and Greenwich Village socialite who now spends her days in an art gallery she runs down the street from her apartment.  Once a week she has dinner with her daughter (Joan Allen) and her daughter’s husband (David Cromer), and her grandson, Daniel (Lucas […]

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Reviews

I Know This Wasn’t Much

  When writing about The Unnameable, some critics prefer to use the term “interlocutor” rather than the “narrator,” since narrator implies a subjective position that is difficult to locate in Beckett’s novel.  Indeed, while reading, it sometimes feels like the words are not being spoken so much as they are foaming out of some unknown source.

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