A fierce argument ensues among the theater company’s liberal managers, a young black dramaturg, a visiting director and the author of the play. The high-minded managers find it inconceivable that the white male author could dare to propose that his black character sell herself into slavery, and are only less certain when the dramaturg reveals that she is the true author and has hired an actor so that the play will be taken seriously.
What follows is a thrashing out of whether the play is viable, which gives way to a larger, and frequently hilarious, debate on political correctness in the theater, racism, sexism, victimization, the welfare state, black leadership and the disintegration of the U.S., as well as the personal disintegration of the characters.
The cast does a superb job of delivering the author’s complex arguments with clarity and conviction. Lisa Louise Langford is especially strong in her dual role as the suffering tour guide and the equally suffering playwright. Ron Faber is very funny as the well-spoken Ohio gentleman farmer and his counterpart, the mealy-mouthed theater manager. Rest of the cast does fine jobs in dual roles.
The play’s director, Jamie Richards, does a first-rate job of keeping the play focused through the several twists and turns concocted by author Reynolds, making his way to an ultra-politically correct ending.