A Black and White Cookie
By Gary Morgenstein
Directed by Jackie Youm
October 15-17, 2021
In the provocative and timely A Black and White Cookie, Harold Wilson, a gruff, conservative African American in his late 60s, finally re-opens his New York City newsstand following the pandemic lockdown. But an exorbitant rent increase forces him to close after 30 years and reluctantly retire to Florida with his niece Carol. Enter Albie Sands, an eccentric 1960s Jewish radical, who persuades Harold to fight the landlord. Overcoming their differences, Harold and Albie form an unlikely yet powerful friendship to confront corporate greed and prejudice.
A Christmas Story
By Philip Grecian, based on the motion picture A Christmas Story, ©1983 Turner Entertainment Co., distributed by Warner Bros., written by Jean Shepherd, Leigh Brown, and Bob Clark; and on the book In God We Trust, All Others Pay Cash, by Jean Shepherd
Directed by Fred Zirm
December 10-19, 2021
This stage version of young Ralphie Parker’s great quest to ensure that a Red Ryder BB gun will await him under the Christmas tree was inspired by the movie cherished by so many. The memorable characters and setting are all there – it is Christmas time in the Midwest in the 1940s and Ralphie must grapple with bullies, friends, his little brother, parents, teachers, and even Santa Claus himself… all the moments your friends and family can’t wait to revisit year after year will be inventively brought to life on stage! With wonderful roles for actors who are both young and young-at-heart, this play promises to delight audiences of all ages while relishing the process of telling what some might argue is the greatest holiday classic of them all!
Back of the Throat
By Yussef El Guindi
Directed by Nicholas Bashour
March 11-April 2, 2022
In this darkly comedic and politically charged play, the audience is invited to examine the balance between freedom and fear, and to question what they would be willing to sacrifice in exchange for feeling safe. With equal doses of intellect and humor, Back of the Throat devolves from a seemingly friendly visit by two government officials into an out-and-out inquisition. The story takes place in the home of Khaled, an Arab-American writer who is being accused of possible ties to terrorists. As the probe continues, and the officials reveal their “evidence,” – including testimonies from witnesses we encounter through flashbacks – are we being shown the truth? Or, rather, are we left with a different appreciation of what euphemisms like “person of interest” seek to obscure? Filtered through the lens of the Arab-American experience, Back of the Throat leaves the audience to question what it really means to be an American.
This play addresses racism, racial profiling, and terrorism and includes simulated physical violence and sexual intimacy.
By Patrick Marber
Directed by David Dieudonne
April 29-May 21, 2022
Four lives intertwine over the course of four and a half years in this densely plotted, stinging look at modern love and betrayal. Dan, an obituary writer, meets Alice, a stripper, after an accident in the street. Eighteen months later, they are a couple, and Dan has written a novel inspired by Alice.
While posing for his book jacket cover, Dan meets Anna, a photographer. He pursues her, but she rejects his advances despite their mutual attraction. Larry, a dermatologist, “meets” Dan in an internet chat room. Dan, obsessing over Anna, pretends to be her and has cybersex with Larry. They arrange to meet the next day at an aquarium. Larry arrives and so too, coincidentally, does the real Anna. This sets up a series of pass-the-lover scenes in which this quartet struggle to find intimacy but can’t seem to get closer.
This play includes frequent coarse and sexualized language, shaming, threats of violence, states of undress, and an act of domestic violence. If you have further questions about any content please contact our Production Team at CogentTheaterCollective@gmail.com.
By Karen Zacarías
Directed by Matt Ripa
June 24-July 16, 2022
In a story that playwright Zacarías has called “a love letter to our city in a sense,” Native Gardens both makes an audience from the DMV feel right at home while also challenging us with an intimate look at how border disputes are happening in our own backyards. Issues of race, class, privilege, gender, and age intersect as we spend time with Pablo & Tania, the young couple who have just moved into the neighborhood, and Virginia (Ginny) and Frank, the nearly retired couple who have lived there for decades. Good intentions come head-to-head with deeply entrenched beliefs in this brilliant comedy in which everything isn’t coming up roses.