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View production schedule

Overview

THE WHIPPING MAN | Watch the trailer
By Matthew Lopez | Directed by Jasson Minadakis
Co-produced by Virgina Stage Company | In association with Lorraine Hansberry Theatre
Featuring L. Peter Callender, Nicholas Pelczar and Tobie Windham

TOP RATING! “Complex, resonant… The Whipping Man‘s a concentrated dose of potent history; with a mix of humor and intense drama that ensure the standing ovation.” – SF Chronicle

Days after the South surrendered to the Union, two emancipated slaves find themselves caring for their former owner’s son, a Confederate captain who was seriously wounded during the final battle of the Civil War. When the three Jewish men share an uneasy, improvised Seder to mark Passover, they discover that, though they are no longer tied by ownership, they remain bound by faith, history and explosive secrets.

PRAISE FOR THIS PRODUCTION
“Easily one of the best shows of the season, packed with challenging ideas and questions that just might reverberate in your mind for days.” – Bohemian
FIVE STARS! “The cast brings the characters to life beautifully – you ache when they ache… It’s impossible not to get caught up in it.” – Marin IJ
“One-of-a-kind powerhouse; a rare theatrical must-see.” – Mill Valley Herald
“A memorable emotional ride, likely to remain in the heart long after seeing the play.”  – TheatreStorm
“Riveting; an astonishing level of immediacy and impact.” – TheaterDogs
“Evocative, poignant and remarkably powerful – an undeniably touching experience” – AltDaily
“Awe-inspiring, engrossing and unexpectedly important” – The Virginian-Pilot
“An explosive story, powerfully played by the three actors. It’s flat-out excellent.” – 89.5 WHRV-FM

FEATURES ABOUT THE PLAY
J Weekly interview with playwright Matthew Lopez
SF Weekly interview with director Jasson Minadakis
Bay Area Reporter interview with playwright Matthew Lopez
Wanda’s Picks interview with actor Tobie Windham *Starts at 90:30
San Francisco Chronicle interview with playwright Matthew Lopez

PRAISE FOR THE PLAY
Winner of the New York Outer Critics Circle’s 2011 John Gassner Playwriting Award
“A sweeping epic” – Philadelphia Weekly
“Suspenseful, searing… The Whipping Man is hard to shake from one’s mind” – The Jewish Week
“ Haunting immediacy; emotionally potent ” – The New York Times

LENGTH OF SHOW
One hour 50 minutes including one 15 minute intermission

The Whipping Man is a bicoastal co-production between Virginia Stage Company and MTC. The award-winning Civil War drama features popular Bay Area actors L. Peter Callender, Nicholas Pelczar and Tobie Windham; direction by our artistic director Jasson Minadakis; and production design by the same team who created our 2011 San Francisco Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Award nominated production of Tennessee Williams’s The Glass Menagerie. This co-production rehearsed in Norfolk, Virginia, where it then ran from February 26 to March 17, receiving nightly standing ovations and rave reviews in the press.

“The inherent evil of slavery is a point we expect a modern audience to take for granted, but [playwright Matthew] Lopez artfully revisits that issue in a story that plumbs the personal impacts of America’s painful racial legacy, coloring it as both a complicated and shameful family secret and our nation’s original sin. That masters and slaves alike in this tale have been raised not just as family but as Jews provides the metaphorically rich (but historically accurate) coincidence of Negro emancipation occurring alongside Passover, a celebration of an ancient escape from bondage.” – The Oregonian

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* Denotes member of Actors Equity Association