*The science of “mean” is artistically crafted in Jocelyn Bioh’s hilarious play School Girls, or The African Mean Girls Play, now showing at the Kirk Douglas Theater in Culver City, CA through September 30th 2018. Ms. Bioh is a Ghanian/American, who is a resident playwright at Lincoln Center and a 2017-2018 Tow Foundation Playwright in Residence with MCC Theatre.
When the lights go up on School Girls, the wit and venom flow from the first dialogue to the last. However, in between, the female students either throw, dodge or defend insults, threats and assumptions about class and culture. Though it is a perfectly cast ensemble piece, starring in the constant tête-à-tête are Maame Yaa Boafo as Pauline and Joanna A. Jones as Erica. From these strong and well-defined characters, the audience is drawn deeper into their layers while obliterating the ill informed notions that someone else’s life is better because of how they look or their socio-economic status.
LaToya Edwards, Paige Gilbert, Abena Mensah-Bonsu and Mirirai Sithole provide a humorous anchor for the dueling divas, while negotiating who will win their loyalty as friends and cohorts. The school is set in the Aburi Mountains in central Ghana in 1986 where Myra Lucretia Taylor is the loving but stern Headmistress, and Zenzi Williams is a showstopper as a former beauty queen, who hopes to rebound to fame and fortune at the expense of the School Girls.
Rebecca Taichman is the Tony Award winning director at the helm of School Girls. Taichman extracts every ounce of humor, drama, passion and pathos that gives this piece literary wings that soars into the hearts of anyone who has endured mean girls and lived to tell about it, laugh about it, learn from it or write about it and win. For tickets and information on School Girls, click here.