AFFINITY LUNCH MINUTES

FULL LENGTH: Ben and Jasmine are the only two Black teachers at Penn Valley, a private Quaker school. Jasmine is passionate and boundary pushing, while Ben has worked his way up the ranks at the school to be Diversity Dean thanks to his “agreeable” nature. A racially charged discipline decision ignites a divide at the school and in Jasmine and Ben’s collegial relationship.
Current Draft: 6/10/2022
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AFFINITY LUNCH MINUTES

Recommended by

  • Lisa Dellagiarino Feriend:
    9 Jan. 2023
    I've been sitting here trying to put into words what I want to say about this play for a while now, and I'm not sure what I can say to do it justice. I love that all the characters are flawed and it doesn't feel preachy. I love that the play will make Black theater goers feel seen and force white theater goers to self-reflect. I especially love the confrontation between Jasmine and Cal being played three different times, in three different tones. This play has been in my reading list for a WHILE, and it was worth the wait.
  • Matthew Libby:
    2 Jun. 2022
    I read this play yesterday and haven't stopped thinking about it since. A tremendous piece of work that goes to some incredibly complex, nuanced, and furious places with such ease and confidence, only to end on a note of radical hopefulness. Gripping dilemmas, vivid, unforgettable characters - this was a true privilege to read!
  • Ben F. Locke:
    28 Apr. 2022
    I really love this play! It's amazing to see what happens when We write OUR stories. This play goes ways deeper than just what's on the surface. It not only tackles allyship for white people but also the complexities of intersectional allyship. I loved that everyone is so flawed and working through how to make sense of what is the best decision to make for themselves and for the good of the other. This is a show that makes you feel icky yet hopeful and I really love that uncomfortable and conflicting feeling.

Character Information

  • Ben
    30's,
    Multi-racial with Black heritage
    ,
    He/Him/His
    He can be portrayed by an actor who is Black, Multi-racial, or Afro-Latinx. Multiracial with Black heritage, Drama teacher, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) dean. Black people have told him he speaks like a white boy. White people have told him he’s “articulate and thoughtful.”
  • Jasmine
    20's-30's,
    Black, Afro-Latinx
    ,
    She/Her/Hers
    History teacher, a bit of a firebrand. Frustrated.
  • Cal
    17-18,
    White
    ,
    He/Him/His
    a high school senior, and a Quaker. A class officer, but not because he’s popular. Plays Devil’s Advocate in class to his classmates’ chagrin. More likely to be talking to a teacher than his peers.
  • Jill
    50's-60's,
    White
    ,
    She/Her/Hers
    Head of school--Penn Valley’s first woman head in 133 years. A Quaker.

Development History

  • Workshop
    ,
    Local Theater Company
    ,
    2022
  • Reading
    ,
    Fuse Theatre
    ,
    2021
  • Reading
    ,
    Relative Theatrics
    ,
    2021
  • Reading
    ,
    Garry Marshall Theatre
    ,
    2021
  • Workshop
    ,
    Clamour Theatre
    ,
    2021
  • Workshop
    ,
    Playwrights Incubator Collective
    ,
    2021
  • Workshop
    ,
    The Garden Script Development
    ,
    2021

Production History

  • University
    ,
    University of Central Florida
    ,
    2022

Awards

Finalist
,
Princess Grace
,
New Dramatists
,
2022
Selection
,
Garden Script Development
,
2021
Selection
,
Playwrights Voiced Festival
,
Relative Theatrics
,
2021