Byhalia, Mississippi at Steppenwolf
Ran July 22, 2016 - August 21, 2016

Written by Evan Linder
Directed by Tyrone Phillips

Jim and Laurel Parker are about to become new parents. They are broke. They are loud. They are “proud white trash.” When Laurel gives birth to their long overdue child, she and Jim are faced with the biggest challenge of their lives. Byhalia, Mississippi explores a couple in the mist of turmoil and a town with a racially-charged past that finds its way into present.

Presented in Steppenwolf Theatre Company’s 1700 Theatre

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Chicago Tribune
★★★½ out of ★★★★ "I've long been interested in Linder's work. But it took until Monday night for him to deliver an honest-to-goodness play. By that I mean a really good new American drama: something wise, truthful, funny and moving; a piece that other theaters should do; a script that hangs easily with shows by the leading writers of our day and a show that might bring a little moistness to one's cheek. BYHALIA, MISSISSIPPI is that play. I fell for it quite hard. I think you would, too. It's lovely." - Chris Jones
Chicago Reader
Highly Recommended! "A world-premiere coproduction from the New Colony and Definition Theatre Company, this superb play by Evan Linder follows Jim and Laurel Parker, “proud white trash” in the titular Mississippi town...Directed by Tyrone Phillips, the work broadens into a thoughtful examination of racism’s tentacles and the grip they have on even the most intimate of relationships." -Marissa Oberlander
Chicago Theater Beat
★★★★ out of ★★★★ "This is a beautifully acted and brutally realistic exploration of betrayal and the price of truth...BYHALIA is uncompromising in its peeling away of the layers of a hypocritical façade that are not unique to the American South, from whence playwright Linder comes." - Clint May
Chicago Theatre Review
Highly Recommended! "...that realism comes from Tyrone Phillips’ direction and John Wilson’s spectacular set, which not only captures the dated furniture and weather-worn wooden siding of the Parker’s country home, but even the gravel outside their front original, challenging play that only furthers the Chicago theater community’s peerless examination of race in the 21st century." -Peter Thomas Ricci