New Detroit theater premieres “F—ing White People”
DETROIT—Detroit’s newest professional theater isn’t playing it safe for its debut production. The Assembly Line Theatre Company has chosen to present the world premiere of FWP (F—ing White People), an edgy, bitingly funny new work from Detroit playwright Sean Paraventi.
FWP runs June 9, 10, 11, 16, 17 & 18. Friday and Saturday performances are at 8 p.m., Sundays are at 5 p.m. Peace Lutheran Church is at 17029 W. 13 Mile Rd., Southfield, Michigan. Tickets are only 15$ and available at the door or at www.brownpapertickets.com.
Set in an unnamed, up and coming neighborhood in the Detroit, FWP explores what happens when an unexpected guest drops in at a dinner party and upsets the politically correct apple cart, causing everyone to question who they really are and what they mean to each other. It’s both timely and timeless, delving into the profound changes that are transforming (parts of) Detroit at present as well as the issues of race and gentrification that have a long, complex history here and elsewhere. Ultimately, though, FWP is a play about friendship and people not always being who they appear to be.
The script was good enough to lure Michigan native Cassandra Svacha home from New York City to co-direct the play with Paraventi as well as star in it. She and Paraventi are the Assembly Line Theatre Company’s artistic partners. In addition to Svacha, FWP stars Mitch Koory, Anne Damman Koory, Dez Walker, Brian Taylor and Ann Katherine.
Svacha, a Macomb County native who has been in New York for the past ten years (and is on her way to England in the fall for graduate school) was thrilled to make a detour home to help bring FWP to life – and especially appreciates the timing.
“Detroit is such an exciting place right now to be involved in the arts, and I feel so lucky to be back and involved in that thriving energy,” she said. “It’s electric.”
She points out that FWP is spot-on when it comes to the attitudes and aspirations and contradictions of today’s 30somethings.
“It approaches those particularly hard conversations that we are having with humor, all the while highlighting Detroit’s rebirth.”
Paraventi said the production will take place in a “phenomenal space” at the Peace Lutheran Church in Southfield. It has cabaret-style seating and people are encouraged to bring their own food and beverages.
“We want people to join us for our ‘dinner party,’ he said. “Come early, play board games, listen to Detroit-themed music and eat and drink!”