Already closed | 3h 15m | East Village

White Noise

From 171 member  reviews
Members say: Great acting, Thought-provoking, Absorbing, Ambitious, Relevant

About the show

Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Suzan-Lori Parks ("Topdog/Underdog," "In The Blood") returns to The Public with a world premiere play about race, friendship, and our rapidly unraveling social contract. More…

Long-time friends and lovers Leo, Misha, Ralph, and Dawn are educated, progressive, cosmopolitan, and woke. But when a racially motivated incident with the cops leaves Leo shaken, he decides extreme measures must be taken for self-preservation.

Member Reviews (171)


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

Archetypal, Overly long, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Ambitious

See it if You want to be challenged by an original premise, albeit logically flawed.

Don't see it if Scenes of racially and historically-based emotional violence will disturb you beyond repair.

Also Baggy storytelling, unnecessary monologues, and cliched characters mar... Read more Read less

Excruciating, Thought-provoking, Profound, Masterful, Dizzying

See it if This show made me physically uncomfortable throughout. Like I wanted to throw up. And that meant it was doing its job. Faced with the ever..

Don't see it if ..present underlying structures of racism that are laid bare, I wanted to get out of the theatre. And I am imminently grateful that I didn't

Great writing, Riveting, Upsetting, Excruciating, Great acting

See it if a searing play about racial dynamics in America with excellent dialogue and acting.

Don't see it if You hate being uncomfortable in the theatre. Some of the plot leaps and character actions felt forced.

Also At three hours long, I expected a bit of a slog, but NO, I was glued t... Read more Read less

Contrived, Complex, Intelligent

See it if You want a smart, well acted play focused (surprise!) on racism, from one of the best in the genre.

Don't see it if You will be vexed if it goes down endless, often contrived alleys for over 3 hours getting to know its characters and their motivations.

Edgy, Absorbing, Great acting

See it if The acting was excellent. You will be reminded of Zimbardo's Prisoner experiment if you know it.

Don't see it if You suffer at the cruelty man is capable of.

Masterful, Great acting, Great writing, Gripping, Uncomfortable

See it if you believe that theater should be challenging. If you're interested in issues around race/racism and limits of friendship.

Don't see it if you don't want to confront difficult issues. I literally felt like someone punched me. This is heavy, intense and disturbing.

Also Excellent cast of 4 actors. Daveed Diggs is exceptional.

Intense, Disappointing, Great acting

See it if you want to see some great performances.

Don't see it if you do not want to see another white-savior-is-actually-bad show.

Uncomfortable, Intense, Relevant, Great acting

See it if you want to see one of the best acted shows in NYC. The play will leave you thinking for days about racism in our society.

Don't see it if you are not prepared to be uncomfortable. There are a lot of uncomfortable moments throughout the play.

Disturbing, Great writing, Great acting, Exquisite, Ambitious

See it if You’re socially aware at all. It rocks your preconceived and safe notions, and walks you out the door shaken. I didn’t know how to feel.

Don't see it if You want a light show, have rigid belief systems, think social inequality has been fully examined, or want a light fun musical. Brilliant.

Also I haven’t walked out of a show feeling as shaken, or rattled, as I did... Read more Read less

Lacks credibility at times, Thought-provoking, Intelligent, Edgy, Ambitious

See it if You want to see Daveed Diggs, as he gives a masterful performance here in the lead role.

Don't see it if Plot points that strain credibility are distracting for you.

Edgy, Great acting, Intense, Thought-provoking, Resonant

See it if interested in a thought experiment that is bound to make you uncomfortable but also feels very realistic.

Don't see it if you don't like to be uncomfortable at the theater or questioning your ideas of race and race relations.

Resonant, Thought-provoking, Must see, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if You want to see very wonderful actors who make you think about racism today.

Don't see it if You like light fluffy plays

Great acting, Slow, Cliched

See it if you like issues-driven plays that are not as worried about character, relationships and realism as making a point.

Don't see it if you prefer plays that feel like they reflect the world we live in, rather than a souped-up version that better serves the political message.

Relevant, Thought-provoking, Profound, Intense, Great acting

See it if for Daveed Diggs - he is wonderful in this edgy, deeply disturbing play, with very intense subject matter

Don't see it if you just want light fare and don't ant to be left really shaken when the play ends.

Imaginative, Must see, Intelligent, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if Powerful portrayal of race relations utilizing full backstory monologues by each of the characters. Daveed Diggs gives amazing performance.

Don't see it if You can’t handle disturbing visuals of subservience you never want to imagine. Stays with you long after and lots to talk about.

Thought-provoking, Intense, Relevant, Great writing, Great acting

See it if you enjoy intense and emotionally powerful play that deals with racial subtext and slavery.

Don't see it if you are easily disturbed by racial or slavery references or don’t want to sit for over 3 hrs even though it flies by.

Great staging, Ambitious

See it if You like risky and deep stuff.

Don't see it if You’re offended by/ defensive of overt expressions of racism.

Powerful, Riveting, Thought-provoking, Great acting, Intense

See it if You’re ready to explore race, slavery, white privilege, & stereotypes; to be uncomfortable, to be angry; to be confused; to think.

Don't see it if You’re not ready to do the above. You want to just relax at the theater. Diggs suppresses his joyful musicality here, going to a dark place

Intense, Intelligent, Great acting, Edgy, Absorbing

See it if You are willing to be blown away from amazing acting and a most uncomfortable subject matter

Don't see it if You can't tolerate racial issues.

Beyond relevant, A must-see

See it if you like shows that make you think about race, white privilege, black lives, and black history. See it for the fine acting.

Don't see it if you cannot relate to the black experience or interracial couples. Don't see it if you are a white nationalist.

Also Maybe if you are a white nationalist, you should be required to see th... Read more Read less

Upsetting, Must see, Masterful, Intense, Heavy

See it if you are moved by challenging shows with a lot to unpack. Gut wrenching and powerful. The actors go very deep and things get crazy and ugly.

Don't see it if you want a light-hearted romp. Don't go if you don't want to think about racial issues. Makes you angry, want to cry or be very reflective.

Riveting, Dizzying, Intense, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if You like Parks and Diggs. You can handle a lot of provocation and you’re looking for theatre to push you. I was shocked and shaken. Good.

Don't see it if It’s a lot of ideas. You’re looking for a cleaner play. You’re afraid of change. You don’t like to see any violence or long monologues.

Resonant, Thought-provoking, Intense

See it if Daveed Diggs is fascinating as Leo in this social experiment by Suzan Lori Parks

Don't see it if The play is too long and borders on the absurd. Plays the race card very hard.

Great staging, Relevant, Thought-provoking

See it if You're interested in exploring racism in contemporary America. You want to support female writers. Diggs is terrific!

Don't see it if You want fully realized female characters. These are somewhat one-dimensional. It's a long show that could use a trim.

Thought-provoking, Profound, Great writing, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if like tough unflinching like great like to be challenged in the want to be haunted

Don't see it if you're looking for something light and frothy... or maybe do... it kind of seems to go down that way... I loved it and it was BRUTAL

March 20th, 2019
“Parks’s enthrallingly thought-packed new play...Directed with a radiant clarity...Superb four-member cast...Any annoyance I felt with Parks’s plot contrivances was erased by the thrill of the play’s uncompromising revelations of character...Four ravishing monologues, give this production its pul...
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March 20th, 2019
“The brilliance of Suzan-Lori Parks’s eviscerating new play ‘White Noise’ is that underneath the finely crafted, often sharply funny apparent realism of its surface, its roots stretch deep away into archetype. Each one of its quartet of characters is at once an individual, nuanced and developed.....
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March 20th, 2019
“Parks' new play deals with many important issues...It sacrifices credibility, coherence and a compelling narrative in favor of didacticism. Parks doesn't quite seem to know what to do with her provocative premise once it's been established...The play feels bloated...with unnecessary subplots...T...
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March 21st, 2019
"Opens with a burst of brainy energy that lasts through the first act. But it takes a nosedive in the sloppy second half, confounding the assured direction of Oskar Eustis and the best efforts of a small, ace cast headed by the magnetic Diggs...Director Eustis has created a warm environment that ...
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