The competition for the 2007 Laurence Olivier Award for best new play was stiff, with Tom Stoppard's critical favorite Rock 'n' Roll up against Peter Morgan's equally popular Frost/Nixon. So when the win went to the relatively unknown Blackbird
, no one was more surprised than its author, Scottish playwright David Harrower, whose stated intention was to scandalize and stun. With its full-frontal confrontation of pedophilia and abusive sexual dynamics, the brutal and bare Blackbird is no one's idea of a feel-good evening. Yet it has since played Stockholm, New Delhi, Prague, Tokyo, Mexico City and New York, and now makes its Kansas City debut with Vanessa Severo and Scott Cordes at the Living Room (1818 McGee). It runs Fridays through Mondays through February 7. Tickets cost $15 in advance or $10-$25 sliding scale at the door. Call 816-221-4260 or see thelivingroomkc.com
for showtimes or more information.
— Grace Suh
Mondays, Fridays-Sundays, 8 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 6, 2 p.m. Starts: Jan. 28. Continues through Feb. 7, 2011