A Race to Nowhere

By: Alexi Siegel

Race was the name of the show and if the subject was not clear enough, the director made sure to include a note in the play bill that took the hand of what she must have considered an ignorant audience and guided them to understand exactly how they should feel by the end of it. While the actors clearly understood the poignant words and fast paced nature of this David Mamet script, it was apparent that the director herself put more time into the game of musical glasses of water and chairs than the incendiary topics of the script.

The show focuses on two lawyers, Henry Brown and Jack Lawson that are building a case for their white, rich client who is accused of raping a black woman. The racial slurs and abrasive swearing in the text is meant to shock the audience, but by providing a note that explains the entire purpose of the play, the surprise was lost. Lisa Abbott, the director of Georgia Southern University’s production, undercut Mamet’s original intention of the play, which is to talk about race in a blunt, unapologetic way by not allowing the show to speak for itself.