James Ijames’ The New York Times Critic’s Pick play is a powerful and provocative reflection on recent events, illustrating the possibilities of collective transformation and radical acts of joy.
Torn from the world they know without warning, Isa, Daz, Grif, and Tiny discover themselves stuck in a nebulous waiting room in the afterlife. While balancing the reality of their past and the uncertainty of their future, their souls try to find peace from senseless action and hope in the life they left behind.
Inspired by the ever-growing list of slain unarmed black men and women, Kill Move Paradise is a portrait of those lost—not as statistics, but as heroes who deserve to be seen for the splendid beings they are.
Playwright James Ijames has described his play as “an expressionistic buzz saw through the contemporary myth that ‘all lives matter.’” Kill Move Paradise has been seen at National Black Theatre in Harlem, The Wilma Theatre in Philadelphia, and Know Theatre of Cincinnati, among others. The New York Times wrote that the work “radiates an urgent and hypnotic theatrical energy.” Philadelphia Magazine called it “a deeply touching evening of theater” and wrote that “Ijames’ writing is vividly, singularly his own [and] has something profound and important to tell us. You shall be moved.” And the Cincinnati Inquirer advised audiences to “lean back and allow the impact of it all to wash over you.”