New Surreal Comedy Explores Being Black and Gay in America

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Phillip James Brannon, Jessica Frances Dukes, Benja Kay Thomas and Lance Coadie Williams in a scene from 'Bootycandy' at Playwrights Horizons.

Playwrights Horizons, a New York theater company with a mission devoted to supporting works by American writers, has opened its new season with a bold new play. Bootycandy, written and directed by Robert O’Hara, is a surreal and sexually explicit comedy about growing up black and gay in America. Philip James Brandon stars as Sutter, who grows from boy to man to budding playwright in the course of the play.

New York Times theater critic Charles Isherwood offers a review of the play, its cast (who play multiple roles), and the risks of a play being directed by its author. Performances of Bootycandy continue through Oct. 12 in the Mainstage Theater at Playwrights Horizons. Because of the explicit language and situations in the play, the company recommends the production be seen by people 17 and older.