David Mamet’s new play Race, now playing at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre, will now run through August 23. Starring James Spader, David Alan Grier, Richard Thomas, and Kerry Washington, the drama about race relations is set in a law office, where two lawyers and their associate are deciding whether or not to take on a controversial case. Originally scheduled to close in June, Race is now extending its limited engagement further into the summer. The production recouped its investment earlier this month.
A law firm takes on a racially-charged case in this provocative new Broadway play written and directed by playwright David Mamet. James Spader and David Alan Grier play law partners, with Kerry Washington as their young associate and Richard Thomas as the famous client charged with the rape of a black woman.
Race is an engaging play with a very good cast, and Mamet makes a few interesting observations about the subject matter. But the drama ultimately does little more than serve as an overview of the current state of race relations (as per the cynical Mamet), without actually offering much of anything new on the topic.
David Mamet’s new play, which has a provocative four-letter word of a title, starts performances on Broadway tonight at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre. The four-person Race stars James Spader (Boston Legal), David Alan Grier (In Living Color, Broadway’s A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum), Kerry Washington (The Last King of Scotland, Ray), and Richard Thomas (TV’s The Waltons, Broadway’s Democracy) and is directed by Mamet, in his Broadway directorial debut. The play is about a law firm – made up of two black lawyers and one white one – who have the opportunity to defend a white man charged of a crime against a young black woman. The production will have its official Broadway opening at the Barrymore on December 6.
Those of us who find it tiring to even watch the New York City marathon, or walk to a good vantage point, may take heart in this Sunday’s Half-Marathon, (August 16, starting at 7:00 am).
Beginning at Central Park’s East Drive, the course makes a clockwise loop around the park, continues to the south end of the park, and veers onto Seventh Avenue. Runners then head south to Times Square and along the Hudson River waterfront to lower Manhattan. The race, sponsored by The New York Road Runners Club, ends on West Street near Rector Street and Battery Park.
If watching the runners isn’t enough for you, entertainment will be provided throughout the course. It might be worth joining the crowd at Times Square just to say you were part of the Times Square Sing-Along—-lyrics to classic songs will be projected on an enormous video screen, while Broadway performers lead the festivities. Both runners and viewers are welcome to join in, but if the runners have enough breath to sing ”Hello, Dolly,” they aren’t doing their job.
Other entertainment activities include Samba New York! at 42nd Street and the West Side Highway; The Creamsicles, a band that will play funk, surf rock and gypsy punk (No, we don’t know what that means either); and the “Corridor of Sound,” five DJ Stations near the finish along the West Side Highway, with–wait for it–a variety of city sounds. Yes, you could probably step outside and hear the same thing, but what fun would that be?
Casting announcements have been trickling in for David Mamet’s new play, Race, arriving at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre this autumn. Film and TV star James Spader (Boston Legal), Kerry Washington (Ray), and Richard Thomas (John Boy on The Waltons) are all set to be in the play, and today it was announced that actor/comedian David Alan Grier will be joining the cast as well. Best known for his comedic work on the ’90s sketch comedy TV show In Living Color, David Alan Grier has been on Broadway several times before, most recently the Broadway revival of A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. He made his Broadway debut back in 1981 playing Jackie Robinson in the play The First. Although Race is hotly anticipated, the subject of the piece has remained hush-hush – though most have guessed that it deals with racial relations. Playwright Mamet (Speed-the-Plow, American Buffalo, Glengarry Glen Ross) will direct this production of his own work, marking the first time he has directed a play on Broadway.