The Homecoming Queen
Closed 1h 45m
The Homecoming Queen

The Homecoming Queen NYC Reviews and Tickets

(43 Reviews)
Members say
Absorbing, Great acting, Intelligent, Thought-provoking, Great staging

About the Show

In Ngozi Anyanwu's Off-Broadway debut at the Atlantic, a bestselling novelist returns to Nigeria to care for her ailing father, but before she can bury him, she must relearn the traditions she’s long forgotten.

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Member Reviews (43)

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962 Reviews | 338 Followers
Intense, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Unusual setting, Repetitive

See it if you're interested in Nigerian life. THC is rich w/music, clothing, Igbo, attitudes (some lovely, some ugly). Well-staged, well-plotted.

Don't see it if you want fully likable characters or a brisk pace. Carping at ea other is presented as ok. Forgiveness granted for dad's cruel response.Why?

657 Reviews | 147 Followers
Absorbing, Clever, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Intelligent

See it if you enjoy family sagas set in Africa with a hint of mystery and misdirection, "return to home" stories, romance with personal barriers

Don't see it if you don't enjoy "family" plays that are slow to reveal its secrets & jump around in time, take place in a culture that may discomfort you,

488 Reviews | 125 Followers
Absorbing, Great acting, Intelligent, Thought-provoking, Confusing

See it if you're interested in cultural differences between LA and Nigeria; a woman's experiences as a child and how it shapes her; joy and tears.

Don't see it if you don't care for family themes, a tale that jumps around in time and can be confusing; moving away from home doesn't always make u happy.

456 Reviews | 256 Followers
Absorbing, Ambitious, Confusing, Great staging, Intelligent

See it if you enjoy plays that jump around from the present to the past to magical realism. You enjoy plays that say you can go home again.

Don't see it if you find it challenging to follow when a play is in the present or past. You are not interested in different cultures. Read more

443 Reviews | 67 Followers
Absorbing, Clever, Entertaining, Great staging, Great acting

See it if you like plays that make you think, that aren't strictly linear, and have great design elements, terrific acting, and have something to say

Don't see it if you are looking for a big brashy musical or a romantic comedy. There is a lot of music & comedy in this, but it is woven into the play.

392 Reviews | 72 Followers
Absorbing, Clever, Entertaining, Great acting, Great writing

See it if a story about going home (Nigeria) and facing painful memories; Nigerian culture with its language, dress, customs..

Don't see it if you don't like moving family dramas, want something uplifting, want chorus in one location Read more

271 Reviews | 68 Followers
Great acting, Slow, Difficult sight lines, Uneven pacing, Engaging story

See it if You have appreciated the myriad of African plays by African women on stage over the past six months or you are interested in acculturation.

Don't see it if You are intolerant of uneven pacing or not being able to see all the action, depending on your seat. Read more

266 Reviews | 60 Followers
Ambitious, Cliched

See it if You particularly enjoy a return to damaged roots type story with all the elements turned up to eleven.

Don't see it if You like a touch of subtlety and would prefer protagonist to have some redeeming qualities before the magical realist ending

Critic Reviews (15)

The New York Times
January 22nd, 2018

"Wrings all the pleasure possible out of its familiar tropes even as it revamps their meaning...If the plot is compelling…it is also sometimes murky…In contrast, too many of the conventionally narrative scenes repeat the same arc…They deliver no new emotional information even if they do deliver delight...Timpo’s work with the principals is exemplary...I appreciated, too, that the characters’ emotions are not rushed into place as if on a conveyor belt, which often happens in shortish plays."
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Time Out New York
January 23rd, 2018

"Most of the actors seem to be dancing to a tune they hear together, but Udofia is half a step out of pace with them...Still, Timpo's beautifully constructed production flatters Anyanwu's work. Where the play is strong...the production is excellent; when the writing gets weaker and more predictable, the staging distracts us with sound and celebration...Misgivings about 'The Homecoming Queen' dissolve in the company’s ability to create a palpable community."
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New York Magazine / Vulture
January 22nd, 2018

"Neither Anyanwu nor Udofia cares about making Kalechi nice, and that’s both refreshing and admirable...'The Homecoming Queen' has the feeling of a play that, like its heroine, is still finding its way...Yet even in its unevenness, 'The Homecoming Queen' does not feel slack...The moments of pathos and brilliance just take a while to start coming...Under the direction of Awoye Timpo, the play’s tonal register can sometimes feel blurry."
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January 25th, 2018

"Insightful writing, deft staging, an irresistibly appealing cast...The focus on Kelechi – and Udofia’s riveting, subtle transformation from aloof interloper to reclaimed villager open to forgiveness and revelation – are exhilarating to watch...'The Homecoming Queen' is rich and deep, a show to treasure. It should be moved to a bigger space and given a chance to breathe."
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January 22nd, 2018

"Better than any play I've seen, 'The Homecoming Queen' captures the everyday theater we perform to convince ourselves and those around us of who we really are...The actors embody these overlapping identities in thoughtful and nuanced performances...Director Awoye Timpo stages the production with a keen eye for detail. While the play becomes a bit shaggy and unfocused in the second half, 'The Homecoming Queen' ends on a high note."
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Lighting & Sound America
January 23rd, 2018

"Anyanwu has quite a potentially wrenching story to tell...I only wish she had better control of her material...If 'The Homecoming Queen' is ever going to become the gripping drama that its story suggests, it will need stronger confrontations and a summing-up of the consequences of trying to bury the past and the damage that has festered over the years. As it is, Anyanwu does something I though impossible: She is making violent assault and revenge seem really quite anodyne."
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Talkin' Broadway
January 22nd, 2018

"A powerful exploration of a familiar story...Cleanly and inventively directed by Awoye Timpo on a long runway that splits the audience into two opposing sides...Despite its top-notch cast and vivid production, 'The Homecoming Queen' needs the kind of polish another draft would provide...It's a heartfelt piece that's worth seeing, particularly for its strong cast that gives themselves over to Anyanwu's story with total commitment."
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Theatre is Easy
January 27th, 2018

"Starts out clichéd, but the piece swells in rich moments of music and feeling expertly executed by the cast of storytellers...Once the exposition has cleared, 'The Homecoming Queen' finally comes to life with delicious surprises and understated character work. Yet it is the talent of the collective ensemble that is superior here...By the end of its 105 minutes, 'The Homecoming Queen' becomes a play for every actor on the stage and for every patron in the house."
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