Obama-ology

Available in Library

When African-American college graduate Warren takes a job with the 2008 Obama campaign, he’s fired up and ready to go – until he lands in the troubled streets of East Cleveland. But somewhere between knocking on doors, fending off cops, and questioning his own racial and sexual identity, he learns that changing society isn’t as easy as he imagined…

"Obama-ology" is a compelling journey into the lives of the black minority of East Cleveland. This invisible underclass – despondent after a lifetime of presidential campaigns with only the educated, white candidate to represent them – have the flame of hope reignited by a passionate young man canvassing for Obama. A stunning new play that demonstrates the resilience of the human spirit to overcome defeat at the hands of social repression and financial hardship.

Cast Requirements

This was initially conceived of as a four-actor ensemble play.
But I have seen as few as four and as many as 10 actors used to
create the world and its characters. Some casting flexibility
can be employed, but this play should have no fewer than four
actors and probably no more than 12.

CLEVELAND TRACK ONE- early 20s, Black male
1.WARREN - young, idealistic, political wonk.

CLEVELAND TRACK TWO- late 20s, Black female
1. INSTRUCTOR #1 - helpful campaign guide. Narrator.
2. BARBARA - hard-nosed field organizer in East Cleveland.
3. RESIDENT #1 - annoyed Cleveland resident.
4. CECE - single mother looking to change her life.
5. CAITS - frustrated and troubled young woman.
6. NEIGHBOR - older woman on the block.
7. MOM - Warren’s Mom.

CLEVELAND TRACK THREE- late 20s, White male
1. INSTRUCTOR #2- helpful campaign guide
2. SAM - East Cleveland Field Organizer
3. RESIDENT #2 - apathetic Cleveland resident
4. COP 1 - nervous, rookie officer
5. COP 2 - surly veteran traffic policeman
6. NIGHT COP - jittery rookie officer
7. BRAD - perky campaign volunteer
8. DAD - Warren’s Dad (off-stage)

CLEVELAND TRACK FOUR - late 20s, White female
1. INSTRUCTOR #3 - helpful campaign guide
2. LAURA - East Cleveland campaign director
3. RESIDENT #3 - Stepford-type wife
4. STORE CLERK - racist store clerk
5. LAINEY - perky campaign volunteer

Set Description

Cars, stores, street corners, and campaign offices of Cleveland during the 2008 election.

Publisher

Oberon Books

Press

“A really enjoyable evening.” Lyn Gardner, The Guardian

“A fine play about politicking US style written by an African-American whose work has not previously been seen in Europe.” Philip Fisher, British Theatre Guide

“Laugh out loud, cry, and contemplate some challenging socio-political issues. Obama-ology is well worth a watch.” Hannah Blyth, Everything Theatre

“See this play. This production. Both are miraculous. ...Both political and intensely human.” Timothy Ramsden, Reviews Gate

“Squire’s smart and incisive dialogue.” Stephen Bates, The Public Reviews

“A resounding success thanks to a lively script that leavens the serious issues with apt humour.” Philip Fisher, British Theatre Guide

Press

Production and Development History

DEVELOPMENT HISTORY
Reading, The Juilliard School, 2014
Workshop, The Juilliard School, 2014

PRODUCTION HISTORY
Skylight Theatre (Los Angeles), 2016

Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts (London), 2015

Workshop, Finborough Theatre (London), 2014