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  This Bitter Earth at Anacostia Playhouse

This Bitter Earth

Anacostia Playhouse
2020 Shannon Place SE Washington

Written by Harrison David Rivers. Directed by Otis Ramsey-Zoe, Jesse (Helen Hayes Award Winner Justin Weaks), an introspective black playwright, finds his lack of activism questioned by his white boyfriend, Neil (Noaf Schaefer), an impassioned member of the Black Lives Matter Movement. Tensions between them continue to grow with each headline announcing another extrajudicial killing. But the human heart can hold complex and often contradictory things, and the two men find themselves at a crossroads. This Bitter Earth explores the quiet revolutions of normalcy, reminding us of the intractable bind between the personal and political and the strength of love in today's turbulent world.

Thru - Mar 15, 2020

Thursdays: 8:00pm
Fridays: 8:00pm
Saturdays: 8:00pm
Sundays: 2:00pm
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  This Bitter Earth Reviews
  • Highly Recommended
  • Recommended
  • Somewhat Recommended
  • Not Recommended

MetroWeekly - Highly Recommended

"...A stage vast enough to contain multitudes is virtually shrunk down to the intimate size of a shared bed, and a shared life, in Otis Ramsey-Zöe’s well-crafted production of This Bitter Earth. The romantic drama, by GLAAD Media Award-winning playwright Harrison David Rivers, charts the progress of writer Jesse and activist Neil from strangers who meet at a protest rally, to lovers who fit together despite their deep-rooted differences."

Andre Hereford

BroadwayWorld - Highly Recommended

"...Black love is a central theme in this season's work at the mighty Theatre Alliance, according to artistic director Raymond O. Caldwell; most shows will be followed by conversations. But the play itself is so strong, and its production so solid and richly engrossing, it provides a lot to talk about."
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Roger Catlin

DC Metro Theater Arts - Highly Recommended

"...A poetic and politically charged same-gender-loving love story, This Bitter Earth by Harrison David Rivers—now playing in a powerfully moving production at Theater Alliance—strips bare the hearts, hurts, and sexual heat of two men who face the hate outside across the color divide."
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John Stoltenberg

DCTheatreScene - Highly Recommended

"...The play asks us to contemplate the question: can you (should you) fall in love across historical lines of racial, social and economic oppression, privilege and inequality. And if, despite everything, you do fall in love across such boundaries, how do you do so with sanity, coherence and integrity? The show crackles with the social and career aspirations, identity frustrations and libidinal uprisings and explorations that reach their peak in young adulthood, while we watch the two men grapple and dance with that question."
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Gregory J. Ford

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