Chitlins and Chocolate

The tradition began wayyyy off-Broadway, when theatergoing snobs used to (un)affectionately refer to stage plays marked by gospel sangin’ and inspirational story lines as “chitlin’ theater.” These dramatic expressions of heartbreak and redemption featured the black stars of Seventies sitcoms and Eighties R&B. But when Tyler Perry’s stage-bred, cross-dressing Madea character hit box-office platinum, detractors of the so-called chitlin’circuit were forced to eat their words. Perry isn’t the only playwright turning chitlins into filet mignon; writer/author/director/producer David E. Talbert is the brains behind eleven hit plays that have grossed more than $75 million in ticket and DVD sales. And with delicious Hershey’s dark chocolate-hue film actor Morris Chestnut as the star in Talbert’s latest production, Love in the Nick of Tyme, you might as well go ahead and add one more hit play and a couple more dollar signs to Talbert’s resumé. Love is a timeless tale of dreams deferred, relationships, and the challenges they bring, set to the tune of romance, drama, comedy, and classic soul. For more information, visit
Jan. 25-28, 8 p.m.; Jan. 27-28, 3 p.m.


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