Why does oppression and diversity go together like Peanut Butter and Jelly? Theater Breaking Through Barriers looks at this without so much as flinching. “The Other Plays” not only celebrates diversity, but raises awareness about the neglect and discrimination that these groups face. Through deeply powerful storytelling, TBTB’s production offers us an unforgettable night of theater.
With short plays from new and existing playwrights, the evening really showcases the talent and remarkable spirit of those who are “othered.” Unlike many traditional plays, where the audience is somewhat removed from the action, these plays hit you right in the face. We have to face our own oppression, racism, sexism and prejudices. It was not “merely an entertaining night of theater.” but more of “we are here and we’re not going anywhere.” With its boldness, one can not help but challenge their own attitudes and oppressive ways.When you hit the nail right on the head like this piece does, it is very hard not to have the tough conversations that surround diversity.
Throughout the evening, we are treated to an insider look at having cancer, being deaf, and dating with Cerebral Palsy. And as great as Melanie Bond, Stephen Drabicki, and Ryan Haddad are, I can not help that but feel that these actors performances transcend desires for mere accolades. I think that they are really trying to say something with their work, which is the highest reason to “act”. One acts because they have something to say that cant be expressed any other way. All the actors in this show are compelled to tell their stories, which means we should listen!
The Other Plays plays through March 26th, 2017. http://www.tbtb.org