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That Uganda Play

a Drama
CATEGORY : DRAMA
by Theroun Patterson

COMPANY : Essential Theatre [WEBSITE]
VENUE : West End Performing Arts Center [WEBSITE]
ID# 4613

SHOWING : July 18, 2014 - August 16, 2014

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PRODUCTION DESCRIPTION

An epic story that moves from America to Africa and back again, imagining the ghosts of war, political corruption and personal betrayal that might lie behind the recent anti-Gay legislation in the nation of Uganda. One of the co-winners of the 2014 Essential Theatre Playwriting Award.


CAST & CREW LIST
Director Amber Bradshaw
Videographer D. Scott Howard
Hannah Jennifer Acker
Masani Portia Cue
Jennifer Blaire Hillman
Tamale Tiffany Denise Mitchenor
Liv/Olivia Sedonia Monet
Dembe Olubajo Sonubi
The Jackal/Joe Kevin Stillwell
Douglas Alex Van
Reed Brody Wellmaker
Click to Submit Cast & Crew Info for this production
REVIEWS

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That U)niversal G)enerality and a Play
by playgoer
Saturday, July 26, 2014
4.5
It’s hard to believe that "Ravens & Seagulls" and "That Uganda Play" were co-winners of the Essential Theatre’s 2014 playwriting contest. Theroun Patterson’s "That Uganda Play" is so superior that the two plays are hardly in the same league. Perhaps both plays read well, but "That Uganda Play" works marvelously onstage as well.

The acting of all nine members of the cast is at the same high level. The only complaint I have is that Alex Van, as Douglas, does not always project enough to be clearly understood. The characters are well-written, which no doubt helped the actors and director flesh them out and bring them to life. Director Amber Bradshaw has blocked the show to keep the flow moving and to mine all the emotions present in the script.

The set consists primarily of a bedroom stage left, on a two-stepped platform, and an office stage right, on a three-stepped platform, with simple, attractive furniture. The center of the stage is dominated by a large projection screen that is used to set the locale for many of the numerous scenes. Scott Howard’s projection design is well-suited to the script (except for one brief African scene played in front of a wintry Central Park projection), but the script and blocking and lighting (by set designer Harley Gould) do a good enough job of establishing locale that the projections really aren’t necessary. Jane Kroessig’s costumes do a wonderful job of helping to establish character.

The language of the play is often poetic and evocative, with nice echoes of memorable phrases occurring occasionally to set up parallels. The action moves inexorably to a conclusion that may not be crystal clear, but gives the audience all the information needed to imagine the progression of events following the final (metaphorical) curtain. The magical and the real cross paths throughout the play, giving a rich texture to the proceedings. It’s intriguing and satisfying, and what more can be asked of a play? [POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]


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