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A Play With Cartoons

written by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins
directed by Nataki Garrett

The West Coast Premiere

Fridays & Saturdays at 7:30pm
plus Sundays at 2:30pm


Reservations & Information: (323) 852-1445
or Buy Tickets Online

Starring Keith Arthur Bolden, Leith Burke, Julia Campbell, Baadja-Lyne, James Edward Shippy, Rachae Thomas, Daniele Watts & Derek Webster

- WINNER, L.A. Drama
Critics Circle Award:

Best Costume (Naila Aladdin Sanders)


"CRITICS CHOICE! Messy, bold, desperately funny and deeply felt: 'Neighbors' is worth getting to know." - Charlotte Stoudt, Los Angeles Times (CLICK TO READ THE FULL ARTICLE)


"CRITIC'S PICK! [A] shockingly subversive play, smartly directed... Jacobs-Jenkins' artistic vision here is thrillingly original. He's clearly an exciting new voice in American theater." - Les Spindle, BackStage

"GO! Razor-sharp dialogue... It's hard to imagine a better production." - Steven Leigh Morris, L.A. Weekly

"One of the most intelligent and accomplished things seen in Los Angeles theater for a long while! Those willing to engage with this provocative piece are rewarded with a production that is excellent on every level, a play that is moving and funny and energetic and uncomfortable in the best way, the kind of play that makes you want to talk about it in the lobby for an hour afterward and think about it for days after that. It's a theatrical firebomb, a genuine event." - Terry Morgan, LAist

"Go see 'Neighbors' at the Matrix. Ask a few questions on your way home." - Steve Julian, 89.3 KPCC

"Highly Recommended! Every element of [Jacob-Jenkins'] vivacious play is fresh, alive, and communicates. It's wildly intelligent, unafraid, and wickedly funny. - Debra Levine,

"Vital and full of verve... This will be one of the most talked about and controversial shows this season." -Michele Hunter,

"A complex, difficult and extraordinary play that must, and does, challenge the mind, heart and even soul of every audience member with a thinking gene in his or her body." - Madeleine Shaner, Beverly Press

"See this play to be inspired and, hopefully, dislodged from complacency." - Tony Frankel, World of Stage

Read the feature article "Matrix Producer Joe Stern Tests the Comfort Zone in New Play, 'Neighbors'"

by I C Rapoport

Julia Campbell & Derek Webster

Julia Campbell & Leif Burke

Sitting L-R: Danielle Watts, Baadja-Lynn & James Shippy
Standing L-R: Keith Arthur Bolden & Leif Burke

Have you seen the new neighbors? Richard Patterson is an upwardly mobile African-American academic. The family of black actors who has moved in next door is rowdy, tacky, shameless, and uncouth. They are not just invading his neighborhood - they're infiltrating his family, his sanity, and his entire post-racial lifestyle. This shocking, explosive and wildly theatrical new play is guaranteed to be the most provocative play you'll see this year.

"Branden is a part of a growing group of New York-based writers of color who have started a previously taboo conversation about identity politics in America," says director Garrett. "In the play, Richard has cut himself off from major aspects of his identity. The family who moves in next door embodies his worst nightmare. They represent everything he's tried to deny in himself."

"I see Neighbors as the continuation of the dialogue about race in America," asserts Stern, who first workshopped Neighbors at the Matrix last December, before it went on to premiere in New York as part of The Public Theatre's LAB series in February.

In an unusual move, The Public opened its LAB production up for review. "Jacobs-Jenkins invents a theatrical conceit sure to baffle and enrage… messy, audacious, fitfully stunning," wrote David Cote in Time Out. In his Back Stage Critic's Pick review, Erik Haagensen raved: "Jacobs-Jenkins has arrived with a big old bang with 'Neighbors,' a grandly theatrical, highly subversive, and immensely intelligent play."

"It's not my intention to shock, just to put these ideas into constellation," explains Jacobs-Jenkins. "What is the value, or lack of value, of 'blackness'? Aren't we past this? Well no, because we still recognize these images. If we were really past it, you wouldn't feel anything. I'm tired of the idea that these issues of race are no longer with us."

Set Design - John Iacovelli
Lighting Design - J. Kent Inasy
Costume Design - Naila Aladdin Sanders
Sound Design - John Zalewski