White Guy on the Bus

By Bruce Graham

Produced by Passage Theatre
May 2016

Photos by Michael Goldstein

Nominated for three Barrymore Awards:  Outstanding Lead Actor in a Play (Greg Wood); Outstanding Lead Actress in a Play (Danielle Lenee); and the Virginia Brown Martin Philadelphia Award. 

Named Best of 2016: Direction, Play, Actors (Danielle Leneé and Greg Wood) in Productions in Philadelphia, New Jersey, and DE by DCMetroTheaterArts.

“Swiftly structured by the playwright in slightly overlapping scenes, the drama receives a production that is fluidly staged by Michelle Tattenbaum, the director…Everyone who sees White Guy on the Bus will probably recognize the hard truths about racism that drive this story — and, sadly, so much of American life today.”
The New York Times, May 15th, 2016

White Guy on the Bus, Bruce Graham’s new play at Passage Theatre, is a compelling work that addresses race relations and other hot-button issues. A lot of ugly things get said – things that are likely to leave some audience members angry. But the play never feels preachy; almost every provocative statement gets challenged by another character…The play moves backwards and forwards in time, though the audience isn’t conscious of that at first. And scenes overlap, allowing Ray to move effortlessly between his world of privilege and his world of bus fares. Director Michelle Tattenbaum’s fluid staging makes a potentially confusing setup crystal clear…White Guy on the Bus asks hard questions about its characters, and about society as a whole. Oddly enough, though, what helps make it so satisfying is that it doesn’t answer all of those questions. But that’s OK – you’re likely to spend a lot of time thinking about those questions in the days after you see this incendiary, timely and essential new play.”
DC Metro Theater Arts, May 11th, 2016

“Graham’s writing and Tattenbaum’s direction guide the cast away from clichéd stereotypes or preachy platitudes, which divide people into good and evil. Instead we see multiple layers of grey in the characters, their situation and their evolution…Run, don’t walk, to catch the last few performances of White Guy on the Bus. You will not regret it.”
NewJerseyStage.com May 16th, 2016

“a powerful story about characters struggling with titanic decisions and negotiating desperately to save themselves…”
Broad Street Review, May 11th, 2016

“[White Guy on the Bus] asks hard questions about race, gender and class, which all intertwine in a tangle of competing motivations and powerful emotion. Directed by Michelle Tattenbaum, the cast is simply superb at bringing these characters to life…This is a powerful play that will make you question your assumptions.”
Princeton Packet May 12th, 2016

“Graham’s straightforwardness and sincerity are matched by an excellent production by director Michelle Tattenbaum for Trenton’s Passage Theater. Tattenbaum accentuates the reality and sense of unfiltered human nature Graham packs into his story and dialogue. Each character is immediately believable, and each sequence is fraught with tension that stems from life and not theatrical contrivance…Tattenbaum’s staging makes you feel more like a fly on the wall witnessing scenes than like someone watching a play.”
U.S.1 May 11th, 2016

Here's a video interview with two of our cast members: