Tim Toyama and Aaron Woolfolk's drama centers around the Goodwins, a black family looking for a new life and respite from Southern racism in Los Angeles during the early years of World War II. After their move to a home (an artfully designed set piece by J.P. Luckenbach) formerly occupied by a Japanese family that was forced to relocate to an internment camp, all seems well. Mama Jane (CeCe Antoinette) is the sharp-tongued, devout matriarch who loves to garden and has vivid memories of life as a slave. Her young and angry son Felix (Larry Powell) has hopes of becoming a musician, while his brother Jodie (Dwain A. Perry) is a simple working man with a devoted wife (Adenrele Ojo) and teen daughter (Candice Afia). But the Goodwins soon discover that they have a "guest," when Henry (Jeff Manabat) tumbles into their midst, forming a bond with his new family but also forcing Jodie to make a troubling, fateful decision that has consequences for everyone. Director Ben Guillory does a fine job directing this provocative piece. Woolfolk and Toyama's script is well-written and subtly explores philosophical and moral issues that are as relevant today as they were then. Los Angeles Theater Center, 514 S. Spring St., L.A.; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 3 p.m.; through May 17. (213) 489-0994. A Robey Theatre Company production.
Fridays, Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 3 p.m.; Sat., May 16, 3 p.m. Starts: April 17. Continues through May 17, 2009
Get the Things to Do Newsletter
Sign up for our weekly guide to events in Los Angeles, and never be bored again. With suggestions for every day of the week, our recommendations will keep you busy on any budget.