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Smart People

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Show times: Tues @ 7:00 (Sep 5 only), Wed & Thurs @ 7:30 PM, Fri & Sat @ 8 PM, Sun @ 4 PM, Thurs matinee @ 2:00 PM (Sep 14 only).

Run time: 150 minutes, including intermission

Performances are on dates in black. Special events in color. Click on a special event day for more information.


Preview performances.

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Available only on the day of the performance. To get your Pay What You Can ticket, come to the lobby before the show (doors open at 6 PM that evening). Tell the box office manager that you are here for Pay What You Can night.

Pay What You Can Night is made possible in part through the support of Program Sponsors Digby Charitable Trust and Agava Restaurant.

Opening Night!
 Light food and drink provided.


Post-show discussion with the actors.

Carole Boyce-Davies is the recipient of two major awards this year:  The  Franz Fanon Lifetime Achievement Award from the Caribbean Philosophical Association and the Distinguished Africanist Award from the New York State African Studies Association. She has held distinguished professorships at a number of Universities and is currently professor of Africana Studies and English at Cornell University.  The author of the prize-wining Left of Karl Marx. The Political Life of Black Communist Claudia Jones (2008) and the classic Black Women, Writing and Identity: Migrations of the Subject (1994), her most recently published monograph is Caribbean Spaces. Escape Routes from Twilight Zones (2013) dealing with the issue of transnational migration and the internationalizing of Caribbean culture. A bi-lingual children’s story Walking/En Avaan (2016) recaptures the adventures of a typical walking character in the Caribbean. In addition to over a hundred journal essays, articles and encyclopedia entries, Dr. Boyce Davies has also published over twelve critical editions on African, African Diaspora and Caribbean literature and culture such including the 3-volume Encyclopedia of the African Diaspora (2008). Her new project is a study of black women and political leadership in the African Diaspora

Smart People

By Lydia R. Diamond
Sep 3 - Sep 24, 2017

Director: Summer L. Williams
With: Jake Lee Smith,
Shannon Tyo*,
Folami Williams*,
Bryce Michael Wood

*member, AEA

CSP Management
Recommended for ages 14+.

Cayuga Radio Group


Do our belief systems stem from our environment, or are some prejudices hard-wired into us? With barbed wit, Lydia R. Diamond (Stick Fly) explores the unavoidable nature of cultural bias and other sticky subjects in the controversial and fiercely funny new play Smart People. Four intellectuals — a doctor, an actress, a psychologist, and a neurobiologist studying the human brain's response to race — search for love, acceptance, and identity in a complex world where political correctness comes face-to-face with cold hard data.


Buy Online or Call: (607) 272-0570

Monday-Friday 12:00-6:00pm; Saturday & Sunday 12:00-4:00pm
Box Office opens one hour before showtime


Seldom do contemporary American plays tap so directly into the cultural conversation as it's happening.” The Hollywood Reporter

Lydia R. Diamond

LYDIA R. DIAMOND (Playwright) Award winning Plays include: Smart People, Stick Fly, Voyeurs de Venus, The Bluest Eye, The Gift Horse, Harriet Jacobs, The Inside, and Stage Black.  Theatres include: Arena Stage, Cort Theatre (Broadway), Chicago Dramatists, Company One, Congo Square, Goodman, Hartford Stage, Huntington, Jubilee, Kansas City Rep, Long Wharf, Lorraine Hansberry, McCarter, Mo’Olelo, MPAACT, New Vic, Playmakers Rep, Plowshares, Second Stage, Steppenwolf, and TrueColors. Commissions include: Arena Stage, Steppenwolf (4), McCarter, Huntington, Center Stage, Victory Gardens and The Roundabout. A recipient of many playwriting awards, Lydia was also an ’05/’06 W.E.B. Du Bois Institute non-resident Fellow, a 2007 TCG/NEA Playwright in Residence at Steppenwolf, an 06/07 Huntington Playwright Fellow, a 2012 Sundance Institute Playwright Lab Creative Advisor, is a Board Member at Chicago Dramatists, and a 2012/2013 Radcliffe Institute Fellow.  Lydia is an NU graduate (’91), has an Honorary Doctorate of Arts from Pine Manor College and is 2013-14 Playwright in Residence at Arena Stage.

Summer L. Williams

SUMMER L. WILLIAMS (Director) is a Co-Founder and Associate Artistic Director of Company One Theatre in Boston. Her most recent directing credits include Barbecue at Lyric Stage Company of Boston, Revolt. She Said. Revolt Again. at Company One Theatre, Bootycandy at SpeakEasy Stage Company, An Octoroon and Colossal with Company One Theatre--Winner of the 2016 Elliot Norton Award for Outstanding Director for both productions. Regional credits: Intimate Apparel at Lyric Stage Company of Boston, Shiv as a part of The Displaced Hindu Gods Trilogy, Shelter of Last Resort by Miranda Craigwell as a part of XX PlayLab 2014 and the New England Premiere of Jackie Sibblies Drury's We Are Proud To Present A Presentation About The Herero Of Namibia, Formerly Known As Southwest Africa From The German Sudwestafrika Between The Years 1884-1915, Idris Goodwin's How We Got On and Lynn Nottage's By The Way, Meet Vera Stark at the Lyric Stage Company of Boston, The Brothers Size and Marcus; Or The Secret Of Sweet as part of The Brother/Sister Plays (2012 Elliot Norton Award nominated for Outstanding Production and winner of the 2012 IRNE Award for Best Play), Neighbors, Grimm, The Good Negro, Voyeurs De Venus (Winner of 2009 Elliot Norton Award for Outstanding Director), The Bluest Eye (IRNE and Elliot Norton Award nominated), The Last Days Of Judas Iscariot, Spell #7 (IRNE nominated), Jesus Hopped The A Train (2004 Elliot Norton Award for Best Fringe Production) Twilight: Los Angeles 1992 (IRNE nominated). Ms. Williams has also directed for the Boston Playwrights' Theatre, Clark University, Brandeis University, The Theatre Offensive and Huntington Theatre Company.

RASEAN DAVONTE JOHNSON (Projection and Sound Design) is delighted to be working with the Kitchen Theatre. An Ohio native, his work can be found in theatre, film, and installations as a projection designer, animator, and filmmaker. His credits include New York: MIDSUMMER (Tiltyard) THE KEPT PRIVATE (Storyhorse Theatre Co.), Chicago: A DISAPPEARING NUMBER (Timeline Theatre Co.), WIT (The Hypocrites), COLUMBINUS (ArtsEmerson/American Theater Company), ANGELS IN AMERICA: MILLENIUM APPROACHES and PERESTROIKA (Court Theatre), ROCK OF AGES (Drury Lane Theatre), Regional: THE MAGIC NEGRO AND OTHER BLACKITY BLACKNESS (Alliance Theatre), THE STONE WITCH (Berkshire Theatre Group), CYMBELINE (Yale Repertory Theatre), International: FAREWELL MY CONCUBINE (Ningbo Song and Dance Company/YinMei Dance). Other credits include collaborations with Manual Cinema, Halcyon Theatre, Teatro Vista, Red Theatre, and Chicago Dramatists. He has lectured at Yale University, Boston University, Syracuse University, The Theatre School at Depaul, and The Ohio State University. MFA Yale School of Drama in Design. www.raseandavontejohnson.com

CHLOE KIRKWOOD (Properties Master) Chloe graduated from the Ithaca College Theatrical Production Arts Program in 2016 and is excited to return to the Kitchen Theatre Company after working on their production of The Mountaintop in 2015. She has spent this summer working locally at the Hangar Theatre, and after spending this past year freelancing in New York City, she is very excited to be moving to California in the fall to work at South Coast Repertory.

MATTHEW LUPPINO (Assistant Stage Manager) is a Kitchen Theatre Company debut! Broadway: BandstandThe Illusionists: Turn of the CenturyThe Illusionists: Live on Broadway. Off-Broadway/NYC: Public EnemyStupid Fucking Bird (The Pearl Theatre Company); Elizabeth Swados’s The Nomad (The Flea Theatre). Regional: CymbelineThe Tempest, Ugly Lies the BoneThe Taming (Shakespeare & Company); VeilsA Little More AliveEngagements, Butler (Barrington Stage Company); The AlchemistA Midsummer Night’s Dream (The Shakespeare Theatre of NJ). Matthew has interned with the Broadway Company of Wicked, is an alum of The College of New Jersey, and is a proud member of Actors’ Equity Association. Many thanks to his friends and family for their continued support.

TYLER M. PERRY (Set & Lighting Designer) a NYC-based lighting and scenic designer, received Kitchen Theatre Company's 2013-14 Norma Fire Emerging Artist award. KTC favorites: Peter and the Starcatcher, The Soup Comes Last, I and You, Thin Walls, The House, Venus in Fur, OpusSlashes of Light, What I Thought I Knew, The Motherf**ker with the Hat, The Whipping Man, Frankie and Johnny in… Lune, among others. NYC: Miss Saigon (2017 revival Assistant); Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella (National Tour, Assistant); Jessica (Sanguine Theatre Company); The Wild Party, The Adding MachineA Man of No Importance (b-side Productions). Regional: A Doll's House, This Verse Business, Trick or Treat (Northern Stage); 25th Annual...Spelling Bee (Florida Rep); Avenue Q (2016 RI BroadwayWorld award winner), Damn Yankees (Ocean State Theatre Co.); Annie, The Fantasticks, Hairspray, Smokey Joe's Cafe (Hope Summer Repertory Theatre); Urinetown, The 39 StepsStage KissLend Me A Tenor, Into the Woods (Cider Mill Playhouse). Web & TV: NBC Sports, Fox Sports 1, ABC, Bravo TV, AOPA Live, and Monumental Sports Network. BFA Ithaca College. Member: United Scenic Artists Local 829. www.tylermperrydesign.com

Jake Lee Smith

JAKE LEE SMITH (Brian) is a graduate of NYU Grad Acting, Class of 2017. Recent productions include the world premiere of Idris Goodwin's The Blueprint directed by Jenny Koons, Buried Child directed by Pam Berlin, and The Winter's Tale directed by Mark Wing-Davey. He also recently starred in the feature film, The Dreams of Rene Sendam, his second collaboration with LA director Joshua Zev Nathan, and has acted internationally at the Shanghai Dramatic Arts Centre and the ancient Greek amphitheatre at Oiniades. Smart People marks his first production out of school, and is his first collaboration with the Kitchen Theatre.

Shannon Tyo

SHANNON TYO (Ginny) Off-Broadway: Kentucky, Bikeman: A 9/11 Play, Dear Edwina. Favorite regional credits include The White Snake (Old Globe, San Diego), Miss Saigon (Pioneer Theatre Co, Music Theatre of Wichita, Cape Fear Regional), The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (Northern Stage, Tuacahn PAC, Pioneer Theatre Co), and Broadway Bounty Hunter (Barrington Stage). BFA Syracuse University. 

Folami WIlliams

FOLAMI WILLIAMS (Valerie) is incredibly excited and grateful to have the opportunity to work at the Kitchen Theatre! She is a New York City based theatre artist and actor. Recent work include The Maids (INTAR Theatre) Soot & Spit (Our Voices Project) and Othello (CSC). She has a MFA in Acting from Columbia University where some of her favorite credits included Blue WindowLulu,  and Jacques, or the Submission. Some past credits include; Romeo & JulietTwelfth Night (Manhattan Shakespeare Project); Auto De Fe, Reconstruction (International WOW Company); King Lear, (Teatro La TEA); AUTOMOTIVE (East River Commedia).  

Bryce Michael Wood

BRYCE MICHAEL WOOD (Jackson) is an American actor from Phoenix, AZ. He is ecstatic to make his Kitchen Theatre debut! He is the only son of Andrew and Janelle Wood. Bryce Graduated from the University of Notre Dame with a Bachelor of Arts and was a Division-I Athlete for the Fighting Irish all four years. Most recently he received his MFA in Acting from UCONN. Most Recent credits include: Welcome to Fear City (Jacques) (Contemporary American Theatre Festival), An Absolute Turkey (Pontagnac) (Connceticut Rep.), King Lear (Edgar) (CRT), Sense and Sensibility (John Willoughby) (CRT), The Laramie Project (Matt Galloway & Others) (CRT), Lysistrata (Kenesias) (CRT), & A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Demetrius) (CRT), Row (Muhammed Ali) (Goodspeed Opera House), Oedipus (Oedipus)( Hope Summer Rep.), Spelling Bee (Mitch Mahoney) (Monomoy Theatre) & A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Oberon) (Monomoy).