MARCUS; OR THE SECRET OF SWEET (Plays & Players): 60-second review

Marcus Plays and Players review photo

James Tolbert III and Erin L. Fleming in MARCUS; OR THE SECRET OF SWEET at Plays & Players. Photo credit: Daria Maidenbaum.

Is life sweet when you live in the Louisiana Bayou before an unprecedented storm hits?  For Marcus (Eric L. Fleming), life at 16 years of age is not only sweet, but also secretively sweet. This young man embraces the following: His true sexuality, questions from his best friends, steamy fantasies in Latin class, others’ recollections of his deceased father, typical neighborhood run-ins, and an intuitive phenomenon. It is impossible for this teenager to have a dull moment, and equally impossible for the audience of Tarell Alvin McCraney’s MARCUS, OR THE SECRET OF SWEET to be bored.  Heavy language throughout the play blends with Yoruban god names for each character.  Warning: The names all sound strikingly similar.

The confusion over names and the commotion and deep love Marcus experiences breed a sweet, chaotic, surrounding swirl of emotion. Watching, we feel as though we are stuck in the intense precursor winds of an impending storm.  As the character Ogun (James Tolbert III) explains, “Like every man, we all got the ability of being alive.”  Marcus and his crew will make you think, feel, and look at “the ability of being alive” in astoundingly new ways. October 24-November 3, 2013, Tickets.


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L. Haber

L. Haber is an Associate Editor at Elauwit Media, in Haddonfield, New Jersey. She is the 2012 winner of the WragsInk poetry contest, a former intern for, and keeper of the personal blog If you are interested in working with L. Haber, learning her first name, or meeting her Saint Bernard, she can be contacted at