American Citizens
Bronzeville
Review by Ross Anthony

The set sprawls lengthwise across this long narrow space. It's inviting, welcoming, and wooden. Warmly reminds me of home with a beautiful staircase to a merely hinted at second floor with moonlight softly illuminating the front door window. There are only 4 rows, but I'd recommend the first, even far from center. As the stage is not lifted, you'll feel as though you're a guest in the house. Some action happens above, an unfortunately placed beam blocks some view for those to the far right (us). A strategically placed mirror might have resolved that issue (perhaps built in as the underside of the bar). Still, the inconvenience was only minor especially when compared to the elegant and smart overall set design. The space embraces and so does Bronzeville.

Starting on a somewhat tentative scene, the production promptly bursts open with warmth, depth, importance and good humor. While the issues are specific to the Japanese-American and African-American experience, the challenges faced by this family have a more general, universal feeling. The Goodwin family wrestles with a life or death ethical decision that has the potential to redefine their identity. While perhaps less dramatic, each of us must make such decisions everyday. In fact, it's a common dilemma among families, individuals and even nations. There is always the temptation to choose security over integrity. Bronzeville beautifully reminds us to take stock of what it is we may be all too hastily trying to protect.

A tad tentative returning from intermission, again, the play soon enough warms and captivates. Overall, a sweet experience, a joy, and a poignant reminder. Especially good performances by Larry Powell and CeCe Antoinette.

Btw, if you haven't been to the "NEW" Los Angeles Theatre Center -- do have a look. They've artfully converted an old downtown bank into a media space. Beautiful, eclectic, inspiring and fun. Where else must you pass through a ten inch vault door to use the restrooms?

-- Books by Author/Illustrator Ross Anthony --


  • Bronzeville. Copyright © 2009.
  • MAY 9, 2008 performance at the NEW LATC. Produced by The Robey Theatre Company in assoc w/ The NEW Los Angeles Theatre Center. Starring Michael Yama, Jeff Manabat, Dwain A. Perry, Candice Afia,Adenrele Ojo, CdCd Antoinette, Larry Powell, Robert Clements, Anthony B. Phillips, Landon H. Lewis Jr., Benjamin Fitch, Darrell Phillip, Dana Lee. Written by Tim Toyama and Aaron Woolfolk. Directed by Ben Guillory.


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Copyright © 1998-2016 Ross Anthony, Author - Speaker - Solo World Circumnavigator In addition to reviewing films and interviewing celebs at HollywoodReportCard.com, traveling the world, composing great music, motivational speaking, Mr. Anthony also runs his own publishing company in the Los Angeles area. While traversing the circumference of the planet writing books and shooting documentaries, Mr. Anthony has taught, presented for, worked &/or played with locals in over 30 countries & 100 cities (Nairobi to Nagasaki). He's bungee-jumped from a bridge near Victoria Falls, wrestled with lions in Zimbabwe, crashed a Vespa off a high mountain road in Taiwan, and ridden a dirt bike across the States (Washington State to Washington DC). To get signed books ("Rodney Appleseed" to "Jinshirou") or schedule Ross to speak check out: www.RossAnthony.com or call 1-800-767-7186. Check out his other sites too: Author*Illustrator*Speaker, Motobookothon 2009, M9, Write Triangle, TwT. Go into the world and inspire the people you meet with your love, kindness, and whatever it is you're really good at. Check out books by Ross Anthony. Rand() functions, Pho chicken soup, rollerblading, and frozen yogurt (w/ blueberries) also rock! (Btw, rand is short for random. It can also stand for "Really Awkward Nutty Dinosaurs" -- which is quite rand, isn't it?) Being alive is the miracle. Special thanks to Ken Kocanda, HAL, Jodie Keszek, Don Haderlein, Mom and Pops, my family, R. Foss, and many others by Ross Anthony. Galati-FE also deserves a shout out. And thanks to all of you for your interest and optimism. Enjoy great films, read stirring novels, grow.


Last Modified: Thursday, 14-May-2009 09:58:28 PDT