Donja R. Love's SUGAR IN OUR WOUNDS to Explore Civil War LGBT Love at MTC Beginning Tonight

By: May. 22, 2018

Donja R. Love's SUGAR IN OUR WOUNDS to Explore Civil War LGBT Love at MTC Beginning Tonight Manhattan Theatre Club will produce the world premiere of Sugar in Our Wounds, a new play by Donja R. Love and directed by Saheem Ali (Twelfth Night for The Public Theater's Mobile Unit), as part of MTC's upcoming 2017-2018 season.

Sugar in Our Wounds will begin previews this evening ahead of a June 5, 2018 opening night at The Studio at Stage II - Harold and Mimi Steinberg New Play Series at New York City Center - Stage II (131 West 55th Street).

On a plantation during the Civil War, a mystical tree stretches toward heaven. It protects James, a young slave, while he reads newspapers about the imminent possibility of freedom, as the battle rages on. When a brooding stranger arrives, James and his makeshift family take the man in. Soon, an unexpected bond leads to a striking romance, and everyone is in uncharted territory. But is love powerful enough to set your true self free? This lyrical and lushly realized play is part of poet, filmmaker and playwright Donja R. Love's exploration of queer love at pivotal moments in Black history. Directing is Saheem Ali (Nollywood Dreams).

Casting, creative team, and other listings information for Sugar in Our Wounds will be announced at a later date.

In addition to Sugar in Our Wounds, Manhattan Theatre Club's 2017-2018 season will also include the previously announced Broadway premiere of Prince of Broadway and the American premiere of The Children at MTC's Samuel J. Friedman Theatre; the world premiere of The Portuguese Kid and the New York premiere of In the Body of the World at New York City Center - Stage I; and the New York premiere of Actually at MTC at the Studio At Stage II - Harold and Mimi Steinberg New Play Series. An additional production at the Friedman Theatre and an additional production at Stage I will be announced soon, completing MTC's 2017- 2018 season.

Manhattan Theatre Club, under the leadership of Artistic Director Lynne Meadow and Executive Producer Barry Grove, has become one of the country's most prominent and prestigious theatre companies. Over the past four and a half decades, MTC productions have earned numerous awards including six Pulitzer Prizes and 23 Tony Awards. MTC has a Broadway home at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre (261 West 47th Street) and two Off-Broadway theatres at New York City Center (131 West 55thStreet). Renowned MTC productions include Lillian Hellman's The Little Foxes; August Wilson's Jitney; Heisenberg by Simon Stephens; The Father by Florian Zeller with translation by Christopher Hampton; Fool For Love by Sam Shepard; Airline Highwayby Lisa D'Amour; Casa Valentina by Harvey Fierstein; Outside Mullingar and Doubt by John PatRick Stanley; The Commons of Pensacola by Amanda Peet; Murder Ballad by Julia Jordan and Juliana Nash; Choir Boy by Tarell Alvin McCraney; The Assembled Parties by Richard Greenberg; Wit by Margaret Edson; Venus in Fur by David Ives; Good People and Rabbit Hole by David Lindsay-Abaire; The Whipping Man by Matthew Lopez; Time Stands Still by Donald Margulies; Ruined by Lynn Nottage; Proof by David Auburn; The Tale of the Allergist's Wife by Charles Busch; Love! Valour! Compassion! by Terrence McNally; The Piano Lesson by August Wilson; Crimes of the Heart by Beth Henley; and Ain't Misbehavin', the Fats Waller musical. For more information on MTC, please visit

The Studio at Stage II is Manhattan Theatre Club's initiative at New York City Center - Stage II (131 West 55th Street). The initiative launched in 2012 with the sold out, critically acclaimed world premiere of Murder Ballad, the rock musical by Julia Jordan and Juliana Nash and has continued with the critically acclaimed premieres of Choir Boy by Tarell Alvin McCraney, Taking Care of Baby by Dennis Kelly, The Lion by Benjamin Scheuer, By The Water by Sharyn Rothstein, Heisenberg by Simon Stephens, Important Hats of the Twentieth Century by Nick Jones, The Ruins of Civilization by Penelope Skinner, Sell/Buy/Date by Sarah Jones, and Fulfillment Center by Abe Koogler.


Donja R. Love (Playwright) is an Afro-Queer playwright, poet, and filmmaker. He's The Lark's 2016 Van Lier New Voices Playwriting Fellow, The Playwrights Realm's 2016-2017 Writing Fellow, the 2016 Arch and Bruce Brown Playwriting Award recipient, and a Eugene O' Neill 2017 National Playwrights Conference finalist. He's also the 2011 Philadelphia Adult Grand Slam Poetry Champion. His work has been developed at Manhattan Theatre Club, Rising Circle Theatre, The Lark, and The Playwrights Realm. He's the co-founder of The Each-Other Project, an organization that helps build community and provide visibility, through art and advocacy, for LGBTQ People of Color ( Select stage-plays include: The Love* Plays (Sugar in Our Wounds, Fireflies, in the Middle), and Soft; Or the Dead N---- Poem (New Dramatists Resident Playwright Semi-finalist). Select film work: Modern Day Black Gay (web series), and Once a Star (short film).

Saheem Ali (Director). Originally from Nairobi, Kenya, Saheem is a director of plays and musicals with an emphasis on new work. Recent credits include Twelfth Night (The Public Theater Mobile Unit), Nollywood Dreams (Cherry Lane Theater), Dot (Detroit Public Theater), The Booty Call (Inner Voices) and A Lesson From Aloes (Juilliard). He has workshopped new plays by Donja Love, Jocelyn Bioh, Jen Silverman, Nathaniel Shapiro, Phillip Howze, Eric Micha Holmes, and James Ijames at Playwrights Realm, MCC, New York Stage & Film, National Black Theater and PEN World Voices. He has co-written two musicals with composer Michael Thurber: The Booty Call (Roundabout Underground Reading Series) and Goddess (O'Neill Musical Theater Conference). He was the associate director of The Tempest at The Public Theater's Shakespeare in the Park. He is a Usual Suspect and former Directing Fellow at New York Theater Workshop. Upcoming productions include Kill Move Paradise at National Black Theater and Where Storms are Born at the Williamstown Theater Festival.