Poet Aziza Barnes makes their playwriting debut with this poignant and comic play about three twenty somethings in New York City hunting for intimacy and purpose in a city that doesn’t seem to care. More…
When shit goes down, your girls show up."BLKS" introduces us to Octavia, Imani, and June. They drink a lot. They smoke a lot. They try to have sex. A lot. When they need each other the most, the women rally to “resurrect their fly” in a day full of humorous and painful attempts to be heard through the noise that surrounds them.
"Deliciously outrageous, and utterly hilarious...'BLKS' a play by Black people for Black people...and you're going to love it whatever race and sexual orientation you may be...The dialogue is brutally honest and we immediately care about all of them, despite the fact each is deeply flawed and has serious emotional issues...Barnes' play is raunchy and heartbreaking and unmissable." Full Review
"It transcends all of those hashtags thanks to the directing and the excellent ensemble cast that combines their talents to lift the play out of sitcom and stereotype and let the audience in past the defensiveness of immaturity...The play is ultimately about something that everyone on this planet strives for, the universal search for love. What it does different is, it puts us in the passenger seat for a great ride in a vehicle that we don’t often get a chance to cruise in to get there." Full Review
"Under the snappy direction of Robert O'Hara, the three lead actors savor Barnes's salty language...Barnes's lack of fear as a writer is what makes 'BLKS' a particularly joyous experience...Each of Barnes's characters is a mess in his or her own special way, and it is in their flaws that we are best able to see reflections of ourselves — and laugh-cringe at the mirror's harsh truth." Full Review
"Aiming to be a raucous comedy of misbehavior and a quiet tragedy of mistreatment, it amazingly succeeds at both...It is serious and sad and profoundly human...Crowe-Legacy, Fuller and Gilbert are so delicate with the sadness that it keeps coming as a surprise how merciless they are with the comedy. O’Hara’s direction is key here...'BLKS' suffers from a familiar structural turbulence at the end, as if it’s too big a vehicle to land on a short runway. Still, it lands." Full Review
"True, a lot seems to happen during the 24 hours or so in which 'BLKS' takes place, but the play is so cleverly constructed you don't immediately notice. It also never falls into the realm of situation comedy, despite the bucketload of profanity-laced punchlines. Moreover, Barnes smartly interweaves the political and personal throughout the one-act work, even if some of the heavier moments she inserts into the piece can feel a tad heavy-handed." Full Review
"Fortunately, for all its overly calculated provocation, the play is also very, very funny at times, which goes a long way toward making up for its thinness...At times the overly broad humor becomes repetitive. But under the energetic direction of Robert O'Hara, 'BLKS' features plenty of laughs...Although all the performers do excellent work, the standouts are Gilbert as the panicked Octavia, and Myers, who charmingly makes the most of the sole male character." Full Review
“This play lands like the extended pilot episode of TV’s newest hit sitcom...The queer black millennial patois of the central three characters is both refreshing to hear and side-splittingly funny...While exceptionally staged and performed, the play nevertheless hews toward the schematic and ultimately makes a more compelling case for its adaptation on the small screen. That critique can only exist because the characters are so compelling and lovable.” Full Review
“Loud and messy and smart—just like the women it depicts—‘BLKS’ is a rambunctious new comedy...If the play turns a mite sentimental in its concluding scenes, the quirky charm of its characters and the words that fly out of their mouths easily compensate. What is especially notable is the playwright’s expressive way with conversation...Barnes’ pungent realistic dialogue embraces a dynamic blend of black vernacular with rich urban slang that sounds wonderfully alive.” Full Review
"Barnes's snappy dialogue is brought to vivid life by the three lead performers, and O'Hara...adopts a judicious approach, knowing where to exercise restraint and where to go all out...The script—funny yet thoughtful, raunchy but human—marks a promising playwriting debut from Barnes...Its thoughtfulness and moments of poignancy are skillfully realized through strong direction and an able cast, giving this compelling new work the production it deserves." Full Review
"There are some hilarious moments, but they do not cohere into a satisfying whole...The prevailing comic mood is occasionally punctured by casual mention of issues related to the Black Lives Matter movement, as if they were items on a checklist...O’Hara keeps things moving briskly but too frequently encourages the actors to shout. The closer you are to the demographic of the characters, the likelier you are to enjoy the play." Full Review
See it if You like comedies with thought provoking subject matter. One of the best plays I have ever seen. Superb writing and superb acting! Bravo!!
Don't see it if You dislike subject matter that features POC, esp women, and LGBTQA issues. Or if you dislike sexual situations and harsh language.
See it if you enjoy a well-written, hilarious show about the graphic sexual exploits of 20-something black women.
Don't see it if you're offended by vulgar language, simulated sex, the N-word,
See it if you wonder what it is like to always have to look over your shoulder in public or how a great group of friends can heal you
Don't see it if foul language, violence or sexual situations offend you
See it if a peek into the private lives of an underserved theater demographic -- educated young black women -- draws your interest ...
Don't see it if frankness, explicit language, strong personalities, and the heartbreak of the contemporary dating scene turn you off ...
See it if you want to laugh, you want to scream, you want theater outside the usual box.
Don't see it if you hate black people. Actually, still see it. It's humane and unapologetic about its characters - a stance everyone could learn from.
See it if you are ready to see the world through the eyes of Black Female 20 somethings, like to laugh while being made to think
Don't see it if you don't like cursing and sexual innuendo, aren't ready to deal with racism from a Black perspective
Also great Set
See it if you want to see a very talented cast put on a great (+ hilarious) show that touches on a lot without hitting you over the head with anything
Don't see it if you don't relate to people in their 20s/30s
See it if you’d enjoy a day-in-the-life comedy about a group of friends. There is much humor & resonance in the proceedings; it’s a lively experience.
Don't see it if you don’t like humor based in realistic situations (some funny, some sad). I can’t imagine going to this and not enjoying the talented cast.
See it if You want a master class in comedic writing that focuses on issues that aren’t often seen in the NY theatre scene.
Don't see it if You want something serious or are offended by LGBT issues or sexual situations.
See it if It was so great to see queer women of color front and center in a show that celebrated joy and quirkiness and sex and immaturity and the
Don't see it if ludicrousness of being young and free in a big city. It framed the main trio's shenanigans firmly in the time, acknowledging the specific
See it if You appreciate a “girls’” take on the current dating scene, enjoy frank and graphic dialogue, and are ready for a fast-paced show.
Don't see it if You don’t like rough or vulgar language, including explicit talk of sex.
See it if you want to support more mainstream theater that celebrates diverse stories, if you like seeing fresh young talent onstage
Don't see it if you are bothered by sex, sexiness, smart black women, queerness, etc etc.
See it if you enjoy laugh-out-loud comedies featuring women of color, queerness, and everyday life, and don't mind a little roughness around the edges
Don't see it if you're uncomfortable with explicit discussions of the female body and a clear focus on female pleasure
See it if you like raunchy, over-the-top humor. It may be hard to understand the urban black idioms and speech, but the surtitles help. Amazing set.
Don't see it if You are put off by a superabundance of the f-, s-, and n-words or with graphic lesbian kissing and more. leave your 5-year-old at home.
See it if You can handle a peek into the raunchy lives of young, ambitious, urban females
Don't see it if You’re uptight, and uncomfortable with unconventional lifestyles and/or language and situations that hit you in the face🤭
See it if you want to groove on a scabrously funny, very well-performed comedy on what it's like to be Young, Brooklynite, and Black.
Don't see it if you want more from theater than a very special episode of a happenin' pay cable multi-cam comedy.
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