New Black Theatre Workshop Play Touches Hearts

Black Theatre Workshop, How Black Mothers Say I Love You, Centaur Theatre Promo Poster

You know that feeling when all you want to do is go for a sunny stroll, but Montreal temperatures laugh in the face of your hope? Well, last Saturday I laughed right back and went on a walk through the Underground Art Festival on my way to a play at the Centaur Theatre. More specifically, I went to see the Black Theatre Workshop (BTW) production of “How Black Mothers Say I Love You” by Trey Anthony.

To sum up, there was some music, there was some laughter but there was also not a dry eye in the house.

About the Play

First of all, the play is about Daphne, a mother from Jamaica who made a big sacrifice. She moved to America and left her young daughters behind for a few years hoping to build them a better life. When the play begins, we are at Daphne’s New York home and her daughters are grown up. She is very sick so they came home to care for her. We then witness the loving but strained relationships between these women unfold, each dealing with their own past trauma.

The Performance: Right in the Feels

Firstly, this play is an emotionally difficult one. However, I found the storytelling was seamless, and moments of love and humor were beautifully woven within the fabric of the underlying pain.

On one hand, we see a mother trying to appear strong by not sharing her struggles with her daughters and being quite rigid which creates a distance between them. On the other hand, we get a glimpse of the women’s community, culture, and personality through humor and music. In the same vein, the audience even got to participate in a gospel music performance!

Most importantly, I believe the actors skillfully depicted the beauty of life.That is to say, it shows how we can survive through tough times with a little bit of laughter and being truthful about our deepest selves with those that matter most.


In conclusion, I think Black Theatre Workshop often puts on really great performances! You can click here to discover upcoming shows by BTW.

Similarly, I invite you to check out our reviews of Sound of the Beast, a BTW production, and The Tashme Project, another moving play presented at the Centaur Theatre.

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