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One in Two

From 118 member  reviews
Members say: Thought-provoking, Great acting, Relevant, Absorbing, Ambitious

About the show

This world premiere from Donja R. Love, inspired by his 10th anniversary of being HIV positive, offers an unflinching portrait of being Black and queer today. More…

From the show:

Three young Black queer men are waiting to be chosen. When one of them is, he’s forced to live a new reality inside an epidemic, exploring the joys, the gags and the truths of not being defined by his diagnosis. Donja R. Love, inspired by his 10th anniversary of being HIV positive, offers an unflinching portrait of being Black and queer today. With grace and humor, one in two breaks the silence on an experience that’s an ongoing reality for so many, and reveals the community that thrives within it. Stevie Walker-Webb directs this world premiere for The New Group.


Member Reviews (118)

MEMBERS SAY:

Thought-provoking, Great acting, Relevant, Absorbing, Ambitious
78
Avg Score

76
Great acting, Dizzying, Clever, Absorbing

See it if you like experimental plays using changing realities as a dramatic motif.

Don't see it if if you don't like plays about the AIDS crisis.

38
Dizzying, Confusing, Ambitious

See it if You’d like to support the cause and spread awareness of aids/HIV epidemic.

Don't see it if you expect a legit play. This is an amateur try of absurdity but a major miss. The play needs tons of works and a better director.

65
Resonant, Great acting, Relevant

See it if You want to see a three character play about three black men and the HIV stigma that surrounds them. It's a topic that's not shown a lot.

Don't see it if You don't like linear plays, with plot/characters. This is more of a message/idea play where the cast is just there for the playwright.

93
Absurdist, Intelligent, Great acting, Ambitious

See it if This is a thoughtful play — there is real intelligence behind how this play progresses — behind its absurdist structure (think “No Exit”).

Don't see it if I don’t quite get this part of the critique — if a play is excellent in many ways — people should see it and then judge for themselves.

Also Before seeing “One in Two” the premise seemed formulaic and “preachy” ... Read more Read less

During previews
77
Great acting, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Absorbing

See it if You enjoy unconventional ways to tell a story. Great performances. Relevant story.

Don't see it if You dislike shows with actors playing multiple characters.

During previews
71
Ambitious, Thought-provoking, Slow, Clever, Absorbing

See it if If you like a story about aids epidemic in the black community. A play told in a different way than usual.

Don't see it if Can be a little hokey at times breaking the fourth wall and in its delivery.

During previews
75
Thought-provoking, Impassioned, Edgy, Unsettling (at times), Amusing (at times)

See it if you want to see a gimmicky but serious & sobering PSA about the persistent proliferation of AIDS in the black gay & bi communities.

Don't see it if You're looking for some lite entertainment or strictly conventional theater; you don't like your fourth walls broken (or your hearts).

Also This is a difficult show to "score" as any criticism of the production... Read more Read less

During previews
77
Thought-provoking, Intense, Indulgent, Dizzying, Ambitious

See it if Love's impassioned, angry, autobiographical cri de coeur regarding black male HIV status & its perceived lack of attention Bracing & defiant

Don't see it if Despite its compelling call to action, dramaturgy gets too meta & often loses focus & strength Yet potent outcry towards black homophobia

During previews
78
Engaged, Uneven, Important, Metatheatrical, Handsome

See it if you like Love’s work, or have any interest in the ongoing HIV epidemic among young black gay guys.

Don't see it if Metatheatricality gives you the hives: Here the “characters” break out of character routinely to rearrange the play.

Also Donja R. Love is 1 of my favorite playwrights to have emerged in the p... Read more Read less

During previews
79
Clever, Thought-provoking, Great acting, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if you like clever, unusual one act plays about self-esteem, especially among young African American men, rapid fire dialogue, identity issues

Don't see it if you don't like nonlinear works set in non-specific locales, contemporary and blunt issues among African American men, nudity, crude language

During previews
77
This is a play w an arresting message: there is still an aids crisis for gay black men as "one in two" [title] will become hiv positive

See it if urgent cry for help; graphically shows misery under AIDs threat/homophobia but shot thru w humor; talented cast

Don't see it if play hits you over the head w message, employs perplexing absurdism where straight drama would be more effective

During previews
79
Grim, Great staging, Edgy, Ambitious

See it if Statistic 1 as voice of the playwright, with assist of Statisics 2 and 3, relates his grim story of surviving his black death health status.

Don't see it if "Dreamstate" play is code for novice playwright.Great set opens doors to slurs,profanity,sexual situations,nudity.One in every 2 black/gay.

Also "You aren't alone in this, the hurt is a bigger virus/I would like to ... Read more Read less

During previews
90
Resonant, Absorbing, Great writing, Great acting

See it if See 3 characters play different roles (such as bartender, nurse, Mom). One guy is HIV+ and shows many raw emotions (drinking, drugs, etc).

Don't see it if You're offended by front/rear nudity, simulated anal sex or drug use. It's an affecting powerful show that runs 87 minutes.

During previews
85
Intelligent, Relevant, Resonant, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if You want to see a stunning play. Different from standard drama. Where does it start? When does it end?

Don't see it if You have a problem with stories about HIV in the Afro-American gay community.

During previews
66
Too gimmicky to put over it's message.

See it if You appreciate gimmicky stories about aids.

Don't see it if You want a real play telling a real story.

During previews
78
Totally relevant, Agitprop?, Psa?, Edgy, Thought-provoking

See it if interest in HIV epidemic re: black gay men, passionate reveal of life status, engagement in abstraction, humor & drama in the telling

Don't see it if no interest in engagement in issues, dislike these adjectives... black, gay, Hiv infected, experimental, gimmicky, humorous, overly dramatic

Also A return to 1970s experimental theatre, agitprop, absurdism in its pre... Read more Read less

During previews
84
Hiv crisis in black gay community gets a warm, thoughtful look

See it if Talented cast of three in a play about the sadness and dysfunction of an HIV positive black gay man. Touching, informative and funny.

Don't see it if The actor playing the lead part is chosen by the audience at the start. So each actor must know all the parts-- from sad to hilarious.

During previews
79
Quirky, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Confusing, Ambitious

See it if want or need to be educated about the significance of the Aids crisis amongst black gaymen. Use of "childsplay" promotes the innocence in us

Don't see it if you prefer not to be manipulated by a not too clever playwright. Includes simulated sex scenes.

During previews
83
Strong sense of pathos and ethos, Dynamic, Heartfelt and personal, Rough around the edges—but reflective of reality, Riveting and resonant

See it if a fan of Donja R. Love’s thoughtful work; invested in a metafictional story about an HIV-positive black, gay playwright confronting truth.

Don't see it if you prefer straightforward, uplifting plays; uncomfortable with simulated sex, homosexuality, and some (brief) nudity; unsettled by blood.

Also I’ve enjoyed Donja R. Love’s other plays and while one in two is a mor... Read more Read less

During previews
78
Bold, Thought-provoking, Intense, Relevant, Great acting

See it if You want to see a play unlike many you might have seen about someone being HIV positive. You have an open mind and not easily offended.

Don't see it if Seeing three black queer men play different roles in an attempt to shed some light on being HIV positive makes you uncomfortable

Also The staging design looked simple but was very creative and effective f... Read more Read less

During previews
25
Grandiloquent, Relevant, Disappointing, Boring, Annoying

See it if you are interested in plays about HIV that are very non-traditional in format with some good acting.

Don't see it if you dislike plays that should be emotionally affecting but lack much poignancy due to an extremely annoying unorthodox script & production.

During previews
95
Raunchy, Intense, Great writing, Great staging, Great acting

See it if you appreciate innovative, small cast, minimal set, dark contemporary theme, realist drama about gay black male sexual relationships and HIV

Don't see it if you can’t tolerate uncomfortable drama themes and scenes, including explicit black gay male sex, language, violence, and considering suicide

Also This play is the most vivid, explicit, dramatic portrayal of the exper... Read more Read less

During previews
88
Full of life and surprises, Informative, Intelligent, Ambitious, Great acting

See it if Opens a world many people are unaware of, AIDS crises in black LGBT community. Presented in a funny, dramatic, unique, heartbreaking style.

Don't see it if You do not care You think it will be too distressing You think you know it all You want a feel good show

Also You will miss an unusual presentation if you miss this.

During previews
65
Slow, Staggering facts, Confusing, Ambitious

See it if you're interested in stories about queer men of color.

Don't see it if you like straight forward narratives.

During previews
70
Epic, Cliched, Important message, Gimmicky

See it if a tremendous amount of theatrical artifice is used to make a point, although the message is poignant and worth hearing

Don't see it if discussion of the construction of play and broken fourth wall are some of the devices used to tell the​ story

Also Ambitious construct with excellent acting. The story is relevant and i... Read more Read less


December 10th, 2019
CRITIC’S PICK. "Counting on Compassion in ‘one in two’: Donja R. Love’s powerful play balances tenderness and fury to explore how H.I.V. has become a ”hidden emergency” in the black community."
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December 10th, 2019
4/5 Stars "Raw, intense and surreal...Initially, the play’s tonal shifts and lack of details may confound...But Love knows how messy, overwhelming and confusing living with HIV can be. His play channels that experience while serving as a blunt wake-up call that the epidemic is far from over."
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December 10th, 2019
"'One in Two' Looks at the Absurdity of Being a Black, Queer, HIV-Positive Man: Donja R. Love's semiautobiographical play makes its world premiere."
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December 29th, 2019
"Donja R. Love's Absurdist Drama one in two Demands Attention For Black Gay Male HIV+ Realities"
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Cast & Creatives (3)