“Race,” a new play in two acts written and directed by David Mamet, opened at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre on Broadway last night, December 6. Starring James Spader, David Alan Grier, Kerry Washington and Richard Thomas, the story revolves around a small legal firm determining whether to take on the case of a wealthy white man charged in the rape of a young black woman.

Thomas plays the role of the accused, who claims it was consensual. While white lawyer Jack Lawson played by Spader and black lawyer Henry Brown played by Grier talk with Strickland, Susan, a young black female associate of the firm played by Washington is present in the background.

Previews for “Race” began November 16 in the 1,058-seat theater. Ticket prices range from $59.50 to $121.50, including a $1.50 facilities fee, with paid admission averaging about $78 throughout previews. The production reported a gross of $448,415 for the week ending November 29, according to the numbers reported to the Broadway League.

Evening performances are scheduled for Tuesday at 7 p.m. and Wednesday through Saturday at 8 p.m. Matinees are Wednesday and Saturday at 2 p.m. There is no performance on December 24 at 8 p.m. and December 31 at 8 p.m.

The theater is dark on Monday except for an additional performance December 28 at 8 p.m. One other additional performance is scheduled for December 27 at 7 p.m. The play runs for one hour and 40 minutes. There are two acts with one 12-minute intermission. The closing date for “Race” is open-ended.

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The Ethel Barrymore Theatre is located at 243 West 47th Street, between Broadway and 8th Avenue.
Further scheduling and ticketing details are available on the production’s official Web Site.

Opening Night: ‘Race’

Publication Critic Review
Variety David Rooney “…as it is, it’s a lit fuse that crackles and pops but never quite explodes.”
New York Times Ben Brantley “…never acquires that crackling, syncopated urgency that makes a Mamet play sing and sting.”
USA Today Elysa Gardner “Mamet deserves credit for a briskly entertaining, if flawed, study.”
Chicago Tribune Chris Jones “‘Race’ is wholly watchable. Gripping, actually.”
Bloomberg John Simon “…full of wry jokes, epigrammatic jolts, and acrid, even cheeky provocations.”
LA Times Charles McNulty “Mamet plays a strange shell game with his theme, leaving his characters in a limbo where they’re neither winners nor losers.”