by Zija Lubin-West

Race, the newest David Mamet play (which he both wrote and directed), is a very bold piece of work. The writing is straightforward, and in the midst of all the bickering and anger, it is quite entertaining.

Jack Lawson is a cynical lawyer who is approached by a messed-up billionaire charged with raping a black woman. Lawson’s partner, Henry Brown, is a man of morals, but is by Lawson’s side most of the time. Susan, a young and eager intern with strong views, helps on the case. As the case unfolds, Lawson and his team uncover secrets about Brown and themselves.

The raked stage was an interesting choice. Though it was easier to see all of the actors onstage, it must have made it harder on the actors to move around. It is uncommon to have a raked stage in contemporary theatre.

The office took up the entire stage and was used very well. No one seemed to be moving just for the sake of it, or because that’s where they were told to go. Each of the actors seemed to really understand what they were saying and who their character was.

Though Race is bold, it is also very funny. This is a play that could easily offend people, but with the right crowd and the right attitude, it is a heavy and heavily humored show. 

TICKETS: $26.50 student rush • Ethel Barrymore Theatre, 243 W. 47th St.