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  American Ethnic at The Greenhouse Theater Center

American Ethnic

The Greenhouse Theater Center
2257 N Lincoln Avenue Chicago

A hip hop theatre infused performance featuring nationally recognized SLAM Poets Kelly Zen-Yie Tsai, Usman Ally and Idris Goodwin who will expose the way that television sitcoms, news networks and commercials influence public perception regarding race and ethnicity, and how the media can either be a tool for deepening or dismantling race, class and gender lines in America.

Thru - Mar 29, 2009

Thursdays: 7:30pm
Fridays: 7:30pm
Saturdays: 7:30pm
Sundays: 2:30pm

Price: $15-$20

Show Type: Performance Art

Box Office: 773-404-7336

Running Time: 1hr 30mins

The Greenhouse Theater Center Seating Charts

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  American Ethnic Reviews
  • Highly Recommended
  • Recommended
  • Somewhat Recommended
  • Not Recommended

Chicago Reader - Highly Recommended

"...Kelly Zen-Yi Tsai delivers a seductive ode to Missy Elliott's ambiguous hip-hop erotics, Usman Ally confides his secret gratitude to Jack Bauer and 24 for keeping Middle Eastern actors employed, and Idris Goodwin relives a traumatic childhood encounter with Al Jolson's flickering blackface. What emerges is less a coherent theatrical experience than a funny and powerful mash-up of three vibrant young voices raised in defiance of the status quo."
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Leon Hilton

Centerstage - Recommended

"...Incorporating a booming soundscape reminiscent of Public Enemy, "American Ethnic" weaves a barrage of spoken word and personal vignettes by three performers representing Pakistani, African-American and Chinese backgrounds. It can be a disconcerting spectacle for those unaccustomed to following rapid-fire dialogue, but the presentation underscores the play’s provocative edge. Usman Ally engages the audience with moving snapshots that reflect the uneasy position that media stereotypes have placed him in as well as an arch comic skill that crisply pinpoints racial politics."

Rosalind Cummings-Yeates

Time Out Chicago - Somewhat Recommended

"...It’s not that the performers are hectoring or humorless. To the contrary; they’re all marvelous actors, bent on engagement, frequently disarming the audience with self-deprecating charm. And the stereotypes they puncture all merit the process. Why do Pakistanis get pigeonholed as the terrorists they mostly aren’t and not as the doctors they actually, disproportionately comprise? How much more ostracizing is the niche of “token Asian reporter” or of big street black guy with a heart of gold than any Caucasian could imagine? But only the pieces by Ally and Goodwin, regarding 24 and international notions of blackness, respectively, manage to implicate (and engage with) the elephant in the room (whites) beyond the stereotype of blithe privilege."
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Brian Nemtusak

ChicagoCritic - Recommended

"...This show is 90 minutes of diverse styles, fast paced entertainment with an edge designed to stimulate a frank and open discussion of the prevailing attitudes about race. Remy Bumppo is to be commended for producing this worthy theatrical event that also becomes a rich communication source for discussion. You’ll be entertained and stimulated by this polished theatrical event. Be sure to stay for the post show discussion which is an essential part of this experience."
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Tom Williams

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