In 2010, playwright Jacqueline E. Lawton was named one of 30 of the nation's leading black playwrights by Arena Stage’s American Voices New Play Institute.
Good Ink for the Wonderful Wizard of Oz
"The universal truths of love, trust, and tenacity are the bedrock for the Wonderful Wizard of Oz, and Adventure Theatre MTC shares the story with magic and wonder. The timeless tale can be seen again and again as an adventure full of life lessons to appreciate and be aware of the magic in simple moments, and to expand the sensibility — of home." Debbie Jackson, DC Theatre Scene
"... engaging adaptation of the story."
"We don't give ratings at Broadway World, but if I were you I would click my heels three times and wish yourself to Glen Echo Park so you won't miss a wonderful WIZARD OF OZ." Jeffrey Walker, BWW Reviews
'"The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is highly entertaining ... will be a hit with everyone!" Julia L. Exline, DC Metro Theatre Arts
"Playwright Jacqueline Lawton’s adapted version of the time-honored fantasy is a perfectly abbreviated, easy storyline for children to grasp with twists, surprises and original details such as Dorothy wearing silver slippers (as opposed to ruby-colored) to reflect L. Frank Baum’s 1900 novel."
"If you are ready to take a journey to see this familiar favorite with a fun new spin, just knock your heels three times and wish your way over to Adventure Theatre for The Wonderful Wizard of Oz!" Raisa Lefe, MD Theatre Guide
Good Ink for The Hampton Years
“Lawton’s work is a unique exploration that confronts the audience with not only the challenges of Negro oppression, but she subtly touches on the inequality of gender in this play. The dialogue is compelling, someone is always pushing someone to do something, driven heavily by words and honest convictions laced into that text.”
“The play speaks volumes about all of these critical subject matters while still keeping the focus on the art of creation; in the faces of the audience without being offensive.”
“Theater J’s The Hampton Years is a fantastic success … a sensational and enthralling new work that should be seen.” Amanda Gunther, DC Metro Theatre Arts
“Local playwright Jacqueline E. Lawton’s world premiere play gracefully tackles questions about race, education, and art."
“Lawton’s thoughts on art and aesthetics help give The Hampton Years heft without making it pretentious.
“In many ways, The Hampton Years is a play about race, but what Jacqueline E. Lawton’s new work has to say about art can be just as compelling.” Missy Frederick, Washingtonian
“The drama, based on real people … shows off the impressive research Lawton has done in constructing her account of a time of awakening for African American artists.
"An audience emerges after two hours in the Goldman Theater at the DC Jewish Community Center agreeably enlightened about efforts at Hampton — today known as Hampton University — to fortify young black men and women for a world resistant to their artistic goals.”
“The play…does fill you with admiration for the pioneering efforts of Viktor, who both nurtured black visual artists and championed the art of Africa.”
“The Hampton Years” portrays art as opening eyes to the plights of the excluded.”
“The Hampton Years” is necessary.” Peter Marks, The Washington Post
'The Hampton Years' by Jacqueline E. Lawton. Part of the Locally Grown: Community Supported Art Festival at Theater J. On Stage May 29 - June 30. Trailer features artwork from 'Hampton Years' subjects John Biggers, Samella Lewis, Elizabeth Catlett, Charles White and Viktor Lowenfeld.
"The Hampton Years touches on many, many intriguing concepts and questions."
"The Hampton Years is smart and ambitious, a script full of promise." Amy Berlin, ShowBizRadio
"The play brilliantly takes individual plot lines and seamlessly intertwines them."
"According to a press release from Theater J, Lawton was named one of 30 of the nation’s leading black playwrights by Arena Stage’s American Voices New Play Institute and it’s not hard to see why. On top of everything else Lawton has put into this play, she forces the audience to think. She pushes your mind out of its comfort zone."
"In the midst of it all, Lawton somehow managed to hit me with some wisdom. Well played, Lawton. Well played." Olivia Owens, Brightest Young Things
"The Hampton Years has many strengths and deserves to be seen by a wide audience." Susan Davidson, Curtainup DC
"The Hampton Years skillfully mines issues of race, religion and gender during World War II." Megan Kuhn, Baltimore Post Examiner
"Lawton, a prolific and celebrated African-American writer who lives and works in D.C., has written a play with substantial roles for women and actors of color." Chris Klimek, Washington City Paper
“The Hampton Years is nothing short of a triumph.”
“The Hampton Years argues powerfully, for Art and Theatre departments alike, of the vital need for the humanities in higher education.” Andrew White, Broadway World
"The Hampton Years engaged deeply with the complex tensions between offering young African Americans education in self-sufficient trades or the arts, and the subtle—and not so subtle—expressions of institutional racism in the '40s art world. When theatre reflects our society and history in this powerful way, it can help us see our beauty and weakness with greater objectively, and map out roads to change." Teresa Eyring (Executive Director), Theatre Communications Group
"Jacqueline E. Lawton is a playwright of growing renown—a 2012 Theater Communications Group Young Leaders of Color award recipient and a member of Arena Stage’s Playwrights’ Arena."
"[The Hampton Years] works its way into our minds and hearts." Patricia Davis, HowlRound
Good Ink for Blood-bound and Tongue-tied
“In her lines, Lawton gives us moments of powerful imagery and poetry.”
“The dream sequences are in many ways the most arresting dramatically.”
Susan Galbraith, DC Theater Scene
Good Ink for Deep Belly Beautiful
"Lawton's prolific outpouring over the last several years has been noteworthy. She has a tendency to write like a stew, with tasty ingredients chopped and swirling in a bubbly cauldron. Her moments between characters are real and intense and scalding hot. She pierces into interior emotional spaces, including ugly crevices, and displays the results for all to see. It's quite intriguing to watch the unfolding in poetic language and lyrical passages." - Debbie Jackson, DC Theater Scene
Good Ink for Anna K
Good Ink for Mad Breed
“Mad Breed exemplifies why I love theater. It did far more than hold my attention for an hour and a half: it defied my expectations, it made me laugh, and it sparked my curiosity about an interesting subject straight out of history.” - Janice Cane, DC Theater Scene
"a comic and curious glimpse into the eccentric, language-loving world of the Booths"
‘Mad Breed” is a veritable education-sprinkled play with fascinating details from Maryland’s antebellum history and racial past." Patrick Folliard, Gazette