The Shipment and LEAR
“A subversive, seriously funny new theater piece by the adventurous playwright Young Jean Lee. . . . Ms. Lee does not shy away from prodding the audience’s racial sensitivities—or insensitivities—in a style that is sometimes sly and subtle, sometimes as blunt as a poke in the eye.”—Charles Isherwood, The New York Times
“Lee is a facetious provocateur; she does whatever she can to get under our skins—with laughs and with raw, brutal talk . . . [and with] so ingenious a twist, such a radical bit of theatrical smoke and mirrors, that we are forced to confront our own preconceived notions of race.”—Hilton Als, The New Yorker
With The Shipment, her latest work taking on identity politics, Young Jean Lee “confirms herself as one of the best experimental playwrights in America” (Time Out New York). The Korean American theater artist has taken on cultural images of black America, in a play that begins with sketches of African American clichés—an angry, foul-mouthed comedian; an aspiring young rapper who ends up in prison—and ends with a seemingly naturalistic parlor comedy, which slyly reveals the larger game Lee is playing, leaving us to consider the many ways that we see the world through a racial lens.
Young Jean Lee is a playwright, director, and artistic director of her own OBIE Award-winning theater company, which as been producing her plays since 2003. Her other works include Songs of Dragons Flying to Heaven, Church, The Appeal, and Pullman, WA, and they have been produced across the country and internationally.