Banished Children of Eve

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There’s blackface aplenty in Banished Children of Eve, Kelly Younger’s honest-to-goodness historical melodrama based on Peter Quinn’s E.L. Doctorow–like novel, but the outrageous imagery is less surprising than the earnestness of the overall approach. Exploring racial tensions between Irish immigrants and African-Americans in Manhattan’s Civil War–era Bowery, the play intertwines the fates of ten downtrodden New Yorkers during the explosive Draft Riots of 1863. The tale's sentimentality and broad theatricality are not so skillfully mixed.—Paul Menard


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