New York | Already closed


From 5 critic and 5 member reviews
Members say: Relevant, Confusing, Absorbing, Ambitious, Indulgent

About the show

Set in Brooklyn 2017, 'Pillowtalk' is an intimate two-character drama that brings to life one night in the lives of a newlywed interracial gay couple, using inventive staging incorporating elements of ballet. More…

Through a formal exploration of theatrical naturalism and the codified gender norms of ballet's pas de deux, 'Pillowtalk' queers the intersections of race, gender, and class to examine the evolving values of gay marriage and ask whether queer communities of color can truly celebrate marriage equality in times of #BlackLivesMatter? The play explores how liberation and oppression co-exist in our most intimate spaces, transforming social and cultural traditions into radical performances of change.

Already closed | The Tank (Midtown W)

Culture Catch

"Delves deeply, fearlessly, and often hilariously into the marital life of crusading Asian-American journalist and his African-American ex-athlete husband...'Pillowtalk' manages regularly to be simultaneously self-aware and emotionally honest, and JP Moraga and Basit Shittu similarly balance tension with tenderness as they create a fully realized, lived-in interplay between Buck and Sam." Full Review


“‘Pillowtalk’ does have its audacious moments including the final pas de deux - choreographed by Katy Pyle to wonderfully moody music by Helen Yee - which is a natural extension of Buck's pipe dream of becoming a classical ballet dancer. The two young men grapple with each other, perform high lifts and wrestle themselves into complex shapes, dressed in Andrew Jordan's revealing costumes consisting of strips of colorful cloth.” Full Review

The New York Times

"Poking and prodding at questions of love, identity, and safety in a hostile world, Park is fusing naturalistic drama with ballet...A beautifully designed production, held gently aloft throughout by atmospheric original music. When the choreography meets...Day-Glo dance costumes, they make a drama all their own...The play is front-loaded with diatribes...that are tedious and untheatrical, even if you agree with them. Yet 'Pillowtalk' is a political work, and feels very much of this moment." Full Review

Theatre is Easy

"A naturalistic two-hander with elements of dance to heighten the emotional charge...The play gets high points for being candid about its message. The characters never shy away from saying exactly what they mean...However, the play's script suffers from a lack of nuance as it turns pedantic with dialogue saturated with political buzzwords...The dance duet at the end is dreamlike and achingly beautiful. If only the script that came before could have matched it." Full Review

Time Out New York

"Kyoung H. Park directs his own 'Pillowtalk', an uneven two-hander about a faltering same-sex marriage, in which the couple grapples with confusion about what fulfillment should feel like. Park's portrait of them is both sentimental (there's a fantasy ballet) and lacerating. For example, one man complains about their neighborhood, but nails himself instead. 'Everyone here now looks like my class at NYU!' Oof: Gentrifier, spruce up thyself." Full Review

Indulgent, Relevant, Confusing

See it if You are interested in how the political/economic/cultural environment might affect inerracial relationships

Don't see it if You have a problem with characters moving from naturalism to symbolism. Are these guys portraying real people or are they meant to be types

Also One problem was that the characters kept vacillating from being real n... Read more Read less

Unusual drama & dance piece about gay couple

See it if Male married couple, one Asian one black, spar about money, real estate, race, sexual power. Clever but talky until they enact it in dance

Don't see it if Visually appealing, well written and acted. The couple's arguments are a bit repetitive but it's fun to watch them dance in amazing costumes

Thought-provoking, Slow, Relevant, Ambitious, Well written

See it if Dense, hyper-articulate & politically driven drama about interracial/cultural relationship of young gay couple Well acted; helps momentum

Don't see it if Although heartfelt, talkiness makes for static going (in relationship & in play) & nearly sabotages drama Dance/Movement ending saves it


See it if you're interested in hearing about racial dynamics, interracial couplings, enjoy dance (which was less infused in the piece than expected)

Don't see it if you like natural sounding dialogue, if you want an exciting plot

Absorbing, Great writing, Relevant

See it if you're an activist or interested in LBGTQ movement

Don't see it if you don't like modern theater

Cast & Creatives (10)