Theater in the Wake

Published in collaboration with thINKingDANCE. Access original post here.

Photo: Ian Douglas

Photo: Ian Douglas

Sometimes you do not control the circumstances surrounding your entrance into a theater.
Sometimes you are not in control of what wells up inside of you in response to art.
Sometimes, maybe that’s what art is.


My sister Mary’s mother died Friday.

Mary came to live with me two months after I turned 13 and one month before she turned 14. When she came to live with me I called her cousin.

None of this has anything to do with the show I’m about to see.


In Bronx Gothic, Okwui Okpokwasili tells the story of two girls coming of age in hate-love. She tells this story through her body, through reading their loose-leaf letters, through threading together snatches of song. The girls’ bestfriendship demands and flaunts its honesty, the kind that can be cruel but never heartless. This intersection of oppositional energies is the excruciation of adolescence.

One of the girls recounts a grown man telling her her black is so ugly she’s almost beautiful.


head over to thINKingDANCE to read the rest of Kirsten’s piece.


Bronx Gothic, Okwui Okpokwasili, New York Live Arts, October 21-24,

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