CenterSeries

The Ars Nova Production Of:
“Underground Railroad Game”
by Jennifer Kidwell & Scott R. Sheppard with Lightning Rod Special, Directed by Taibi Magar

Integrated Programming

Game Night!
presented by the Williams Program in Teaching and the '62 Center for Theatre and Dance
If play is essential to children's development, what can the politics of the games we play teach us about how we construct culture and identity? Join the makers of Underground Railroad Game at the '62 Center for board games, dolls collected from moments throughout history, and pizza. A conversation with Susan Engel, Senior Lecturer in Psychology and Director of the Program in Teaching, will follow.

Underground Railroad Game contains sexually explicit material, strong language, and mature themes. Because of the challenging nature of the material we suggest audience ages 18 and up. Questions about what you’re in for? You can reach out to Producing Director, Randal Fippinger for more info.

 

Created by Jennifer Kidwell & Scott R. Sheppard, Directed by Taibi Mager

Production Design TILLY GRIMES
Scenic Design STEVEN DUFALA
Lighting Design OONA CURLEY
Sound Design MIKAAL SULAIMAN
Production Stage Manager LISA MCGINN
Stage Manager NATALIE HRATKO

Named one of the top ten theatre experiences of 2016 by the New York Times, Underground Railroad Game is a vivid, piercing piece of experimental performance from Philadelphia-based company Lightning Rod Special. Over its rapid-fire 75 minutes, the piece toes the line between sketch comedy show and excruciating American history lesson, set in a middle school classroom.

At Hanover Middle School, two teachers get shockingly down and dirty with a lesson about race, sex, and power. The quick-witted duo goes round after round on the mat of our nation’s history in an R-rated, far-reaching, and absolutely unflinching comedy.

Lightning Rod Special’s raucous performance earned them the 2017 Obie Award for Best New American Theatre Work, one of the highest honors in the field. By tearing down barriers of political correctness and challenging the contemporary liberal interracial dialogue, Underground Railroad excavates hidden—and often ugly—truths about race, identity, and historical memory.

Post Show Q&A with Assistant Professor of English Kimberly Love.

“If we interrogate the mythos of the Underground Railroad we uncover an apparent need to make systemic exploitation, degradation and objectification palatable. Why is it that we love to narrativize ourselves in ways that propagate the very violence we proclaim to upend?” – Jennifer Kidwell & Scott Sheppard

Time Out New York Critics’ Pick & Best of 2016
Outrageously funny! Strikingly Rendered by bold, smart performances.
–Time Out New York

2017 Obie Award Winner, Best New American Theatre Work

In-all-ways sensational. – The New York Times

Explosive! Fearlessly, ferociously uninhibited… It’s wildly entertaining. The New Yorker

 

 

This performance is made possible by the W. Ford Schumann ’50 Endowment for the Arts and the Lipp Family Fund for Performing Artists.