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Los Angeles Times – Critic’s Choice

"Wicked Humor and Surprising Heartbreak"
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“Muy Cómico, Muy Significativo!”
La Opinion


The Explosive Comedy about Race Hits 40 Cities in Fall 2006 National Tour

The play about “those words” is stirring things up across the United States on its 2006-2007 national tour. Los Angeles based Speak Theater Arts thinks the rest of the country is ready for N*GGER WETB*CK CH*NK, a comedy – yes, a comedy - about race in America.

Blending theater, hip-hop, stand-up comedy, slam poetry, and true-life stories with their own original style, three tour-de-force performers take on racial slurs, stereotypes, and the concept of race itself in this 90-minute stage production.

Winner of “Best Play” from the American Readers Theater Association, N*GGER WETB*CK CH*NK charges into the dangerous territory of race, but without the predictable anger and angst. Cast/co-writers Miles Gregley, Rafael Agustin, Allan Axibal say, “The show traces the origins and evolution of three derogatory terms that shaped our lives and took the place of a genuine understanding of our distinct cultures. In doing this show we hope to de-power these words for ourselves and for our audiences.” Co-writers Steven T. Seagle and Liesel Reinhart directed the production.

Since their first sold-out performances in Los Angeles, N*W*C (as they refer to themselves) have built a large following among more diverse and younger audiences than may typically find their way to local performing arts centers. While speaking to a new generation of theater-goers, N*GGER WETB*CK CH*NK has still garnered high praise from critics and traditional theatergoers, as well.

In the first three months of the Fall 2006 leg of the tour, the show is booked at over forty different venues in twenty different states. Regional theaters and college-based performing arts centers — most east of the Mississippi – are the presenters. (A detailed listing of fall tour dates and locations appears at the end of this document.)

The title of the play has met with controversy in cities like Cincinnati and Seattle. Some media outlets have refused to advertise the show because of the title. But those who have seen the play understand the choice to use the three derogatory words:

As they chant racial slurs, the actors are greeted not by bricks or rotten tomatoes but by gales of laughter. This audience is in on the joke, and over the next hour and a half, the show saps those slurs of their pejorative power through a succession of group scenes and comedic monologues in which the actors recount personal encounters with racial typecasting. – Los Angeles Times

A young African American woman mentioned that she came to the event ready to tear the guys apart, because as a political activist she was extremely offended by the show’s title. She had even written a very angry speech that she was going to deliver. However, after listening to and watching the performers, she said that her attitude turned 180 degrees and she couldn’t wait to see the entire show the following evening (and bought a ticket and did just that!). – Van Ackerman, Director of Marketing/PR, Cincinnati Arts Association

Previous Los Angeles performances of the show include a 2004 extended smash run at the Los Angeles Theatre Center produced by LA’s Latino Theater Company, as well as its premiere at UCLA’s Freud Playhouse. The 2006-2007 tour will also include residency programs with local community members to further address issues raised in the show in even greater depth.

For more information about the tour and the show visit

Media resources, including high resolution images, at

NOTE: Some venues have selected to present the play under the alternate title: N*W*C: The Race Show

CONTACT: Charity Rodriguez 408-720-1914

Fall 2006 Tour Schedule N*W*C (tentative as of August, 2006):

City, State
18-Aug Grand Performances Los Angeles, CA
20-Aug Morehead State University Morehead, KY
23-Aug Case Western Reserve University Cleveland, OH
25-Aug Chapman University Orange, CA
27-Aug Wilkes University Wilkes, PA
29-Aug Elon College Elon, NC
31-Aug University of Vermont Burlington, VT
5/6 Sep Texas A&M University, Commerce Commerce, TX
11-Sep William Jewell Liberty, MO
12/13-Sep Kansas State University Manhattan, KS
15-Sep North Carolina, A&T State University Greensboro, NC
18-Sep Henderson State University Arkadelphia, AR
20-Sep So. E. Missouri State Cape Girardeau, MO
22-Sep University of North Carolina, Charlotte Charlotte, NC
25-Sep Johnson and Wales, University Charlotte, NC
26-Sep Radford University Radford, VA
28/9 Sep University of South Florida Tampa, FL
2/3 Oct University of Wisconsin, Whitewater Whitewater, WI
4/5 Oct Robertson Memorial, Bradley University Peoria, IL
9-Oct University of South Carolina, Columbia Columbia, SC
10-Oct University of South Carolina, Upstate Spartanburg, SC
18-Oct Newman Center for the Performing Arts Denver, CO
19/20 Oct University of Wyoming Laramie, WY
23-Oct Louisiana State University Baton Rouge, LA
25-Oct Simmons College Boston, MA
26-Oct UMASS Dartmouth N. Dartmouth, MA
27-Oct UMASS Lowell Lowell, MA
30-Oct SUNY Rockland Community College Suffern, NY
1/2-Nov Florida Int'l University-Biscayne Bay Miami, FL
4-Nov Akron Civic Center Akron, OH
7-Nov Slippery Rock University Slippery Rock, PA
9-Nov Wittenburg University Springfield, OH
10/11 Nov Xavier University Cincinnati, OH
13-Nov College of Mt. Saint Joseph Cincinnati, OH
14-Nov North Kentucky University Highland Hts., KY
16-Nov Western Michigan University Kalamazoo, MI
17-Nov University of Detroit, Mercy Detroit, MI
18-Nov Findlay University Findlay, OH
5-Dec Cal State University Sacramento Sacramento, CA

Spring 2007 tour dates will be posted at

Charity Rodriguez
Speak Theater Arts/N*W*C

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