Texas in Paris OFF-BROADWAY REVIEWS

Photo: Carol Rosegg
  • NY TIMES

  • Opening Night:
    January 27, 2015
    Closing:
    March 1, 2015

    Theater: York Theatre Company / 619 Lexington Avenue, New York, New York, 10028

    Synopsis: 

    Based on true events, Texas in Paris is the musical journey of a man and a woman — one white, one black – invited to France to perform at the Maison des Cultures du Monde. They have never met, have no professional singing experience, and face the challenge of working together and co-existing in an unfamiliar world. Apprehensive of each other, they struggle with preconceptions but forge a surprising spiritual bond that transforms their on-stage performance and their lives.

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  • NEW YORK TIMES REVIEW OF Texas in Paris

    Crossing an Ocean in Attitudes

    Laura Collins-Hughes

    February 6, 2015: It always seems slightly superhuman, that luminosity some actors possess. Lillias White had it back in 1997, when she won a Tony Award for playing a middle-aged prostitute in The Life, and she is incandescent still as an elderly poet-songstress in Alan Govenar’s Texas in Paris, at the York Theater Company. Giving a glorious, glamour-free performance in sensible shoes, Ms. White provides the emotional center of gravity for a musical play that is as much about race relations in America as it is about the spirituals and cowboy songs that run through it. Based on a real concert series that Mr. Govenar produced in 1989, Texas in Paris is a kind of adventure for an unworldly odd couple of outsider musicians: Osceola Mays (Ms. White), a South Dallas widow and the granddaughter of a slave, travels to France with John Burrus (Scott Wakefield), a former rodeo cowboy and a white man who is sure he has “nothin’ against black folks.” “You on welfare?” he asks Osceola, before they even get on the plane. If Mr. Govenar were following the conventional trajectory of such tales, we would watch John evolve. Texas in Paris tells a more interesting and uncomfortable story, even if it does end on a musical high note and even if too much of the dialogue might be deadly in lesser hands.

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