STRAIGHT WHITE MEN, A New Play in Progress by Young Jean Lee


A New Play in Progress

Written and Directed
by Young Jean Lee
Leeds Theatre
April 4-7, 10-12 & 14
Wednesday-Saturday @ 8pm 
Sunday @ 2pm

A Conversation with Playwright and Director Young Jean Lee
March 19, 2013 @ 6PM
Leeds Theatre, Brown University
Admission is Free!!

Brown University’s Department of Theatre Arts and Performance Studies and Sock & Buskin proudly present "STRAIGHT WHITE MEN, A New Play in Progress", the latest experiment by OBIE award-winning playwright Young Jean Lee.

The New York Times hailed Lee “THE MOST ADVENTUROUS DOWNTOWN PLAYWRIGHT OF HER GENERATION.” Time Out New York called her “one of the best experimental playwrights in America.” Referred to as the “it-girl of experimental theater in New York City” by Studio 360, Young Jean Lee has made a point of challenging herself to make plays based on the last thing in the world she would want to do--in effect writing the worst play ever.  This seemingly dubious strategy has yielded Lee such acclaimed successes as Lear and THE SHIPMENT, both Time Out New York Top 10 picks for 2009 and 2010.

Having accepted an invitation by faculty and students on Brown’s Sock and Buskin board, Lee is currently in residence at Brown in conjunction with the Granoff Center for the Creative Arts, the Creative Arts Council, and the Department of Theatre Arts and Performance Studies. For six weeks she will be working with students in the experimental and process-oriented environment she builds in rehearsals. As a premise, STRAIGHT WHITE MEN explores how straight white men react as their once-unchallenged cultural predominance begins to erode. The show will use the conventions of the "well-made play" as a starting point for its examination of straight white male identity. 

Young Jean Lee is working with actors and also with a dedicated and diverse group of Brown students she has enlisted for exploration of her topic. Lee and her team are interrogating, creating, destroying, questioning, making and remaking night after night in rehearsal. The play, in its evolving workshop format, will be shown in eight-performances at Brown University from April 4-14, 2013. From workshop here at Brown, STRAIGHT WHITE MEN will continue under development for future productions scheduled for New York. Don’t miss your chance to see it here first.

April 4-14, 2013. Wednesday-Saturday at 8pm. Sunday at 2pm. Leeds Theatre, 77 Waterman St., Providence, RI. Tickets:  $15 for adults, $12 for seniors, and $7 for students. Group rates are available. Contact us at (401) 863-2838 or at Visit us in person at the Leeds Box Office in Lyman Hall, 77 Waterman Street, Providence, RI.


YOUNG JEAN LEE (Playwright and Director) is an OBIE award-winning playwright and director who has been called “the most adventurous downtown playwright of her generation” by the New York Times and “one of the best experimental playwrights in America” by Time Out New York. She has written and directed nine shows in New York with Young Jean Lee's Theater Company and toured her work to over twenty cities around the world. Her plays have been published by Theatre Communications Group (Songs of the Dragons Flying to Heaven and Other Plays, The Shipment and Lear) and by Samuel French (Three Plays by Young Jean Lee). She is currently under commission from Plan B/Paramount Pictures, Lincoln Center Theater, Playwrights Horizons, and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. She is a member of New Dramatists and 13P and has an MFA from Mac Wellman's playwriting program at Brooklyn College. She has received grants from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, Creative Capital, NYFA, NEA, NYSCA, the Jerome Foundation, the Greenwall Foundation, and the Rockefeller MAP Foundation. She is also the recipient of two OBIE awards, the Festival Prize of the Zuercher Theater Spektakel, a 2010 Prize in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, a 2011 Guggenheim Fellowship and a 2012 Doris Duke Artist Award.

STRAIGHT WHITE MEN is a commission of the Wexner Center for the Arts and is a production of Young Jean Lee's Theater Company.  Funding support is provided by the Doris Duke Performing Artist Awards program; the New England Foundation for the Arts' National Theater Project, with lead funding from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation; the MAP Fund, a program of Creative Capital supported by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and the Rockefeller Foundation; the National Endowment for the Arts; and the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency.  SWM is being developed at Brown University's Department of Theatre Arts and Performance Studies, Providence, RI with support from the Creative Arts Council and the Granoff Center fo the Creative Arts.  Residency support was provided by the Park Avenue Armory and SPACE on Ryder Farm.

SOCK & BUSKIN was founded in 1901 by Professor Thomas Crosby of the Brown University English Department. There has since been an unbroken record of seasons. Each year S&B chooses four shows to be produced during the following academic year. A fifth show, the “senior slot,” is determined by faculty who select from among proposals submitted by junior concentrators who wish to direct something of their choosing in a full production in their senior year. When S&B isn't reading plays in the Becker Theatre Library, they support production staff by running auditions, assisting construction of sets and costumes, and publicizing S&B happenings around campus. To suggest a play or to request more information send an email to