Lisa B. Thompson

Lisa B. Thompson

Lisa B. Thompson is an award winning artist, scholar, and teacher whose plays have been produced and developed by institutions such as Brava for Women in the Arts!, New Professional Theatre, The Vortex Repertory, Theatre Rhinoceros, Crossroads Theatre, Austin Playhouse, National Arts Festival in Grahamstown, South Africa, Company of Angels Theater, New African Grove Theatre Company, Black Spectrum Theatre,...
Lisa B. Thompson is an award winning artist, scholar, and teacher whose plays have been produced and developed by institutions such as Brava for Women in the Arts!, New Professional Theatre, The Vortex Repertory, Theatre Rhinoceros, Crossroads Theatre, Austin Playhouse, National Arts Festival in Grahamstown, South Africa, Company of Angels Theater, New African Grove Theatre Company, Black Spectrum Theatre, Montreal Fringe Festival, and the National Black Theatre Festival. Her plays include the off-Broadway show SINGLE BLACK FEMALE (LA Weekly Theatre Award best comedy nominee), UNDERGROUND (Austin Critics Table David Mark Cohen New Play Award), MONROE (Austin Playhouse Festival of New Texas Plays winner), and THE MAMALOGUES which will have its world premiere at Vortex Repertory Company in August 2019. Thompson is also Associate Professor of African & African Diaspora Studies at the University of Texas at Austin and the author of the book, Beyond the Black Lady: Sexuality and the New African American Middle Class. Her work has been published in Contemporary Plays by African American Women: Ten Complete Works (University of Illinois Press, 2015) and Catch The Fire: A Cross-Generational Anthology of Contemporary African American Poetry. Thompson’s has received support from a number of institutions, including the MacDowell Colony, Hedgebrook, Harvard University’s W. E. B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research, the American Council of Learned Societies, the University of California’s Office of the President, Michele R. Clayman Institute for Gender Research at Stanford University, UCLA’s Center for African American Studies, the Five Colleges Inc., Stanford University’s Center for Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity and the Millay Colony for the Arts.

Plays

  • Dinner
    What happens when an African American middle class woman and a wealthy Nigerian immigrant man, meet, fall in love and decide to marry after only knowing each other for six months? What will their parents think of this cross class, intercultural and transcontinental union? In Dinner, these characters come together for a meal in Oakland, California that highlights the pleasures and dangers of loving and misunderstanding in the Black Diaspora.
  • Monroe
    A mysterious pregnancy, a lynching and dreams of California haunt Cherry, a domestic who believes that God told her to leave the south. When her friend, Clyde, invites her to go along with him to California, Cherry must decide whether being the keeper of her family’s roots and cultural traditions justifies living under Jim Crow. Set in rural Louisiana during the of middle of the Great Migration, MONROE reveals...
    A mysterious pregnancy, a lynching and dreams of California haunt Cherry, a domestic who believes that God told her to leave the south. When her friend, Clyde, invites her to go along with him to California, Cherry must decide whether being the keeper of her family’s roots and cultural traditions justifies living under Jim Crow. Set in rural Louisiana during the of middle of the Great Migration, MONROE reveals how the threat and aftermath of racial terror occupied the psyches of young African Americans.
  • Underground
    Underground reunites Kyle and Mason, a pair of old college friends who have gone from radicals in their youth to successful professionals approaching middle age. When Kyle unexpectedly shows up at Mason's door, the two have a chance to catch-up, reminisce and, as the evening goes on, engage one another in a battle of intellects over the best road to black liberation. As their argument becomes increasingly...
    Underground reunites Kyle and Mason, a pair of old college friends who have gone from radicals in their youth to successful professionals approaching middle age. When Kyle unexpectedly shows up at Mason's door, the two have a chance to catch-up, reminisce and, as the evening goes on, engage one another in a battle of intellects over the best road to black liberation. As their argument becomes increasingly passionate and more personal, news reports reveal a police search for the leader of a black radical political movement. From flashbacks to their first meeting to the final game of chess that could change their lives forever, Mason and Kyle each pose to one another the central question of Underground: how far would you go to protect your people?

    Reviews:
    https://www.austinchronicle.com/arts/2017-03-31/underground/
    http://www.broadwayworld.com/austin/article/BWW-Review-UNDERGROUND-a-Taut-Psychological-Political-Thriller-20170327
  • The Mamalogues
    The Mamalogues portrays the experience of parenting while black, unmarried, and middle class in the age of anxiety. During a single mother’s retreat women share their angst about racial profiling on the playground, their child being the “only one” at their school, and the politics of soccer in the hood. The satirical comedy follows the agonies and joys of motherhood as these moms lean in, stress out and guide...
    The Mamalogues portrays the experience of parenting while black, unmarried, and middle class in the age of anxiety. During a single mother’s retreat women share their angst about racial profiling on the playground, their child being the “only one” at their school, and the politics of soccer in the hood. The satirical comedy follows the agonies and joys of motherhood as these moms lean in, stress out and guide precious black children from diapers to college in a dangerous world.
  • Single Black Female
    SINGLE BLACK FEMALE (Samuel French, 2012) is a two-woman show that uses rapid-fire comic vignettes to examine the lives of thirty-something African American middle class women as they search for love, clothes, and dignity in a world that fails to recognize them among a parade of stereotypical images.
  • Mother's Day
    MOTHER’S DAY is a comedy where Afro-futurism meets motherhood. What happens when a black woman wants to “lean in” but first must find adequate childcare? In this one-act play the search for a nanny for one professional couple forces them to confront a litany of black maternal stereotypes.
    Review: http://www.laweekly.com/arts/theater-reviews-bohemian-cowboy-tartuffe-black-women-state-of-the-union-2158521
  • I Don't Want to Be . . . (Mamie Till)
    An elegiac theatrical short play where a chorus of black mothers mourn the loss of their children to police violence.
  • Watch
    What happens to the last black woman on earth? Enter the Lab and find out.
  • Mother Nature
    In a world where men over 40 years old find themselves rejected and isolated, what will a mother and her adult daughter do with the aging men in their lives?