This Intersection/Black Artists Contemporary Cultural Experience co-production of three short plays by Keith Josef Adkins makes for a fun, if thin, evening. Director Edris Cooper-Anifowoshe underscores the sitcom aspects of Adkins' writing by playing the themes from The Jeffersons
and Sanford & Son
during the curtain-raiser, Hollis Mugley's Only Wish
. (The songs do sound great, though.) Hollis (Benton Greene) is convinced that pesticides and toxins are poisoning his family, turning his twins into super-smart kids with crappy digestion. He wants the household, including his pregnant wife Stephanie (Selana Allen), to cleanse themselves by fasting. Allen gets the biggest laughs, wearing braids in a sculptural do that resembles a teapot cozy. Stephanie commands Hollis to go to her mama's party, "'cause what we all need to do is come together Afrocentrically." (Allen gives "Afrocentrically" a hilarious, speeded-up emphasis.) Greene, though, pitches Hollis' fervor too high: He'd do better to relax on more of the lines. It's an odd piece, and Cooper-Anifowoshe has some trouble juggling the farce with the darker tones. Seeds Sold
is a gentle monologue about gentrification and loss. Allen compassionately relates the good, quirky details of a woman selling the family home to a rich, white couple despite the protestations of her neighbor. Grey-Haired Smoochies With Rufus
, the final story, is an uproarious farce about two septuagenarians meeting for some illicit kink. They have trouble getting it on because their cell phones keep interrupting with the non-sexy crises of their normal lives. Both Greene and Allen have a ball here, shimmying to Sisqó's "Thong Song" and complaining about the juiceless lives that await them at home. "When I die, it's gonna be from splittin' that bush," Green's Smoochin' Rufus proclaims. Not a bad way to go, and Smoochies
is a great end to the evening.