Monday, November 7, 2011

I Don't Have to Pay $40 to Get "Milk Like Sugar"

I could not wait to see Kirsten Greenidge Milk Like Sugar as well as Tonya Pinkins on the New York City stage once again. However, I walked away from Playwright Horizons, not particularly moved by this play about three inner city black girls who make a pregnancy pact.

I have to agree with Chris Isherwood’s NYT review that the pact is simply not credible. More concerned with their mobile devices, tattoos and sneakers, it is hard to believe that these Alize drinking girls desire to bring children into the world. Yes, they may dream of hanging the latest Coach Diaper bag over their shoulders but children…. Well, that’s another story.

As Annie, the brightest of the trio, tries to find the seed for her baby pact, she predictably encounters two individuals who present her with alternatives to her current plans - Malik who tells her about the possibility of college and education and Keera who exposes her to religion and family. However, this is where Ms. Greenidge’s play breaks down for me. Perhaps intentional, she simply fails to convince us that there is a possibility that Annie can or will be able to change her circumstance.

By the end of the play, no one is surprised at Annie’s condition, but the scary part is that we do not care that she will end up impoverished and miserable just like her mother - Myrna. Now I didn't have to drop $40 to go to the theater to see this, all I have to do is look around the city I love so much. 

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