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A Gentrified Neighborhood Causes a Young Couple to Confront Uncomfortable Truths in 'BUZZER'
1/13/2017 3:18:06 PM


Presented by the College of Charleston Department of Theatre and Dance, “Buzzer” is a dark yet comic drama by playwright Tracey Scott Wilson. Personal transformations in a changing neighborhood may cost more than the rent. When home is part of a newly gentrifying neighborhood, what needs to change to insure one’s comfort? As in most of her plays, Wilson proffers many questions as answers in this fast-paced race-, class- and privileged-laced play.  

Jackson, a young African-American man, has just bought an apartment in a transitioning Brooklyn neighborhood – formerly the mean streets of his childhood. Joined by his white girlfriend Suzy and also his privileged, addiction battling friend Don, Jackson and his roommates are challenged by tensions and their responses to new life in an old place, a place not always inviting but one that is now home. 

The College’s production is directed by Associate Professor of African American Theatre and Performance, Joy Vandervort-Cobb. "This is the second Tracey Scott Wilson piece I've tackled and just like the last one, THE STORY, just when I think I've found the bottom layer, something else unfurls. It's worse than peeling an onion... At least with an onion, you expect to cry. With BUZZER,  you are suddenly so impacted by an unintended micro-aggression, you gasp and choke back a tear. These people are supposed to love one another. Some days, I sit with my student Assistant Directors, seniors Clyde Moser and N. Leon Williams, and just shake my head and grunt. And to think this gentrification is at the hands of the African American character, an attorney, whose plan is to get in on the ground floor of the change – forgetting that in his reclaiming home, he's displacing the people he thought he'd permanently left behind... This piece. Well. I can't wait to talk about it with an audience." 

The design team includes students Jacob McCubbin (Costume Design), Felice Horne (Scenic Design), Matt Gordner (Sound Design) and Ryan Miller (Lighting). The characters include Gibson Carter as Suzy, Dexter Mitchell as Jackson, and Jacob Milano as the recovering addict, Don.

The production will run Wednesday, Jan. 25 through Sunday, Jan. 29, with a second run Wednesday, Feb. 1 through Saturday, Feb. 4. Curtain times will be 7:30 p.m., with an additional 2:00 p.m. matinee on Sunday, Jan. 29. A talkback will occur after the show on opening night. Performances will take place at the Chapel Theatre, 172 Calhoun St. Admission is $15 for general public; $10 for senior citizens, College of Charleston students and employees. Tickets can be purchased online at or by calling (843) 953-6306. 

The show contains adult language.


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