Top Dog/ Underdog

Two black brothers, orphaned when their parents abandon them, struggle to get ahead. You know the struggle is hopeless as soon as you hear their names – Lincoln and Booth.
Lincoln, played by Nigel Shawn Williams, puts on white face to portray Lincoln at an amusement park, where the tourists can take shots at him. He sees this as better than playing three card monte and risking jail again.
Booth, his younger brother, is played by Kevin Hanchard. Booth wants nothing more than to become the three card monte player his brother was – to be “the man”.
This was a powerful evening of theatre – a very gripping story and two powerful actors. Just watching them play cards was amazing, but the emotion and the sadness of the story was overwhelming. This play contains some of the saddest lines I have ever heard: “do you think they left us to find another family? with two boys who were better than us? ” NOt really an exact quote, but close enough.
One of the best things I have seen all year. Definitely a standing ovation!


About cathyriggall

Theatre junkie, who thinks live theatre is the ultimate form of living on the edge. You never know what will happen when an actor steps on the stage.
This entry was posted in Kevin Hanchard, Nigel Shawn Williams, Shaw 2011, Suzan-Lori Parks. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Top Dog/ Underdog

  1. Keith says:

    Yes, the first standing ovation of the year, I think. (Mine had no physical manifestation, but that's my knees , not my opinion.)A tremendous tour de force by both actors – a great opportunity that both rose to magnificently.It had a tremendous rhythm and momentum – you knew what the final outcome was going to be when you saw the characters' names, certainly when the gun was produced, but I still sat on the edge of my seat rooting for them to find a way out – that I knew wasn't there.Philip Akin is certainly a find as a director. Not only for this, but also for Ruined and Intimate Apparel. I wonder what else of his we have missed?

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