'Hackle-raising' play starring blacked-up actors to showcase at Suffolk theatre festival
Alice Jones' Arts Diary
A play featuring black actors in “blackface” will be the centrepiece of this year’s HighTide theatre festival.
The new writing showcase in Suffolk, whose patrons include David Hare and Sam Mendes, will stage the UK premiere of the provocative play, Neighbors by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins in May.
The play, a savage comedy about ‘post-racial’ America, black identity and minstrel shows examines what happens when a family of black entertainers (performed by actors wearing exaggerated minstrel make-up) moves in next door to a suburban, mixed-race family. It is “a 300-year history of black people in the theatre”, according to the young New York playwright, who studied anthropology at Princeton.
The New York Times described the original production, which ran under the title ‘N(e)ig(h)g(bo)ers’ at the Public Theatre in 2010, as “incendiary”, “hackle-raising” and “pure sensation”. After HighTide, it will transfer to co-producers, the Nuffield Theatre in Southampton on 21 May.
Also in the Arts Diary
GlastonburyWI to make debut appearance at Somerset festival
TV reviewIt has taken seven episodes for Game of Thrones season five to hit its stride
FilmPalme d'Or goes to radical and astonishing film that turns conventional thinking about immigrants on its head
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Caitlyn Jenner's mother Ester thought her daughter, formerly known as Bruce Jenner, had transitioned for money
- 2 Charles Kennedy 1959-2015: A gifted, compassionate politician whose career was cut short by the 'demon drink' - latest news
- 3 Alton Towers crash: Four seriously injured and 16 guests trapped as Smiler ride carriages collide
- 4 Ann Summers survey reveals the UK's favourite sex position
- 5 Gay teenager 'forced to have sex with his own mother' to 'cure' his homosexuality, campaigners in India say
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination
Migrants in Kos: Photos show real tragedy after Brits abroad complain of 'awkward' holidays
British tourists complain that impoverished boat migrants are making holidays 'awkward' in Kos
Michael Gove determined to scrap the Human Rights Act – even if Scotland retains it
Threat to scrap Human Rights Act could see UK follow Nazi example, warns UN official
Church of England 'one generation away from extinction' after dramatic loss of followers