Review: American Son, starring Kerry Washington and Steven Pasquale
In this haunting and heartbreaking new play, now making its Broadway bow after several regional productions, the audience is presented with not only a masterclass in storytelling, but with a story that is similar to many that have shaped the United States in recent years.
Kendra (Kerry Washington) and Scott (Steven Pasquale) are a separated, interracial couple, who find themselves at a Miami police station at four o'clock in the morning when they cannot find their son. Officer Larkin (Jeremy Jordan) repeatedly tells the couple that he cannot give them information and that they must wait for Lieutenant Stokes (Eugene Lee) to arrive. The only thing he tells them is that their son's car was involved in a traffic stop.
The four actors give a masterclass in this production, most notably Kerry Washington's raw performance as a mother who is desperate for any information about her child.
The story is one that is all too familiar, seeming as if it were taken from the headlines of any newspaper in the country. It examines race through four sets of eyes, each with their own views and issues on dealing with race. From the first moments of Kendra's pacing to the cries that echo in the last moments in the play, the audience is captivated, as they watch the story unfold, unable to look away. The play sees past the headlines in papers and into the complex world of families, the police, and differing view on race that can change the outcome of a situation.