...what the end will be (Roundabout Theatre Company)
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...what the end will be (Roundabout Theatre Company)

...what the end will be (Roundabout Theatre Company) NYC Reviews and Tickets

(125 Reviews)
Members say
Great acting, Absorbing, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Entertaining

Under one roof lives 3 generations of men that grapple with their intersecting identities. 

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Member Reviews (125)

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754 Reviews | 124 Followers
Cliched, Relevant, Slow, Disappointing, Ambitious

See it if you are curious about how the playwright differentiates between 3 generations of Black gay men in one family. There are some revelations.

Don't see it if you dislike plays using significant issues such as mixed race relationships & euthanasia without acknowledging their significance

657 Reviews | 288 Followers
Portrait of three gens of gay men dealing with serious illness of oldest member, then takes left turn as tearjerker: essence of meh

See it if gets the medicine right; competently acted; big manipulative tear jerker speech evokes tears

Don't see it if not smart, flabby, without direction, no foundation for ending; how many ways can I say meh?

496 Reviews | 250 Followers
Intelligent, Great writing, Great staging, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if An outstanding drama & must see! Powerful performances, beautiful set & moving to tears script. Bravo to all involved with perfection 🏳️‍🌈

Don't see it if If you want a musical then skip this one.

512 Reviews | 79 Followers
Great set, Thought-provoking, Great writing, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if you like terrific actors and great writing.Play explores relationships and sexual identity.Keith Randolph Smith is absolutely brilliant.

Don't see it if you are a right wing bigot.Or actually you should see it and learn something about gay relationships. Beautiful story, well told,well acted.

484 Reviews | 130 Followers
Talented cast, Drifts, Sit-commish, Something missing, Thorny

See it if U like Tyler Perry flavored situations, storyline involving 3 generations gay black men, pretty set and actors, only 1 queen in the cast

Don't see it if assisted suicide, inter-racial gay marriage, centering a grandparent, smoking, assisted living are on your verboten list

473 Reviews | 68 Followers
Black and queer-ass american off-broadway

See it if A family showing how the traumas of homophobia, being Black, masculinity issues may take generations to fade. Predictable but still healing.

Don't see it if Family drama, queerness, Blackness, male masculinity, intergenerational trauma, end of life decisions/conversations, death. Read more

470 Reviews | 91 Followers
Relevant, Resonant, Great writing, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if you’re interested in a terrific generational and LGBT+ drama.

Don't see it if you don’t want to be moved.

469 Reviews | 54 Followers
Relevant, Great acting

See it if a play in the now about people not always represented on stage

Don't see it if want more timeless plays versus something "now". king of felt like two stories in one that didn't really intersect properly.

Critic Reviews (13)

The New York Times
June 2nd, 2022

"In '… What the End Will be,' facing death really means reckoning with life — what makes it worth living despite its impermanence — and learning how to seize some measure of joy for yourself. It’s everything that is meant when we say that Black lives matter."
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The Wall Street Journal
June 2nd, 2022

"While the intergenerational dynamics can also sometimes feel schematic, the characters are crisply defined, and there is an undeniable pleasure in watching the tensions in this unusual family surge and subside. Under the direction of Margot Bordelon, the actors slip easily into the skins of their characters, although the actors with the richer roles tend to outshine the others."
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New York Theatre Guide
June 2nd, 2022

"Audience members seeking a whiff of nuance or insight in this Roundabout Theatre Company production will be left largely wanting. The script by playwright Mansa Ra struggles to find a consistent rhythm that feels like actual people talking to each other. Margot Bordelon’s direction doesn’t help much; it all adds up to a stagy experience."
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June 2nd, 2022

"This play sparkles too (despite the occasional mushiness) because it gets to the heart of some shared human experiences that have little to do with race, sexuality, and gender, such as what it takes to let go of your own pain, and what it means to let someone you love let go of theirs — rules be damned. Ultimately, as the play's title suggest, we all know what the end will be ... the ellipsis is how we get there."
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Lighting & Sound America
June 3rd, 2022

The overall result -- Bartholomew's big scene aside -- is pleasant but glib, affirmative yet sketchy. It's certainly possible that, filled out with more detail and shading, ...what the end will be could become the funny, yet heart-wrenching, drama it aspires to be. But, packaged as a slick, ninety-minute evening of laughter and tears, it strains credulity. This is a tale that wants more intensive telling. Is it too late to hope that it might yet get it?
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Talkin' Broadway
June 2nd, 2022

"A singular spellbinding performance and a beautifully scripted, deeply moving story of self-determination, redemption, and love lie at the heart of Mansa Ra's '... what the end will be,' a play about a cross-generational family of Black gay men"
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New York Stage Review
June 2nd, 2022

"As calculatedly happens throughout '…what the end will be,' there are discussions of many potential ends — including one quite significant, quite literal end. But the play itself suggests there is no end in sight for the societal changes that have occurred over the last several decades and will surely uncork surprises for decades to come."
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June 2nd, 2022

In four scenes spanning a few months, Ra renders his gay family trio’s life events, medical situations, numerous clashes and resolutions with pungent topicality. The pandemic is referenced, gender and pronouns are discussed, and cultural bromides are stated: “Black people can’t be racist. I read that on the Facebook.” Ra’s characters are given rich portrayals by the splendid cast. With his melodious voice, priceless facial expressions and stage presence, veteran actor Keith Randolph Smith grounds the production with his towering performance as Bartholomew. As Maxwell, the fiery Emerson Brooks supremely conveys the character’s bottled-up emotions, offering a moving psychological portrait. The personable Gerald Caesar’s Tony is a vivid take on adolescent struggle.
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