Karma's foster brother, Terrell, has gone missing, and she's trying to find him amidst the inner city chaos that is The Oblong – but his teacher can't remember his name, his foster mom is still cashing his reimbursement checks, and his ex is glad he's gone. Where's the police, where are the reporters? Karma seems to be the only one who cares, but the more she looks, the more she realizes that in The Oblong, caring only means trouble. 

Princess Grace Award-winning playwright Jonathan Payne makes his New York debut with this devastating story based on his experience as a social worker, under the insightful direction of Awoye Timpo (The Homecoming Queen).

September 7 - October 6, 2018
at The Duke on 42nd Street
229 W. 42nd Street


Recommended for ages 14 and up.  This piece contains violence and strong language.

We don’t want to spoil the experience of a new play and therefore are avoiding giving away too much. However, if there are certain themes that you know would cause you extreme distress and you’d like to speak to someone at The Playwrights Realm to find out more before you purchase tickets, you can email us at



Set Design Kimie Nishikawa | Lighting Design Stacey Derosier | Sound Design Luqman Brown
Costume Design Andrea Hood | Prop Design Alexander Wylie | Stage Manager Kara Kaufman


Jonathan Payne’s work has been produced and developed at Long Wharf Theatre, Ars Nova, Fringe Festival NYC, The Bushwick Star, and the Fire This Time Festival. He was a fellow at New Dramatists, Playwrights Realm and The Dramatist Guild, as well as an Ars Nova Play Group. Awards include the Princess Grace Award, Holland New Voices Award, Rosa Parks Award, John Cauble Short Play Award. He received a BA from the GSA Conservatoire (UK), an MFA in Playwriting from Tisch School of the Arts, and an Artist Diploma Recipient in Playwriting from The Juilliard School.


Awoye Timpo's work includes The Homecoming Queen (Atlantic Theater), Skeleton Crew (Chester Theater), Sister Son/ji (Billie Holiday Theater), Carnaval (National Black Theatre), Ndebele Funeral (59E59, South African tour, Edinburgh Festival), The Libation Bearers (Shakespeare Theatre of NJ), Araby (La MaMa), In the Continuum (Juilliard). Producer: CLASSIX, a reading series exploring classic plays by Black playwrights. Broadway: Associate Director, Jitney; Assistant Director, Shuffle Along. Other: Associate Director, Othello (Shakespeare in the Park), ABC/Disney, Cherry Lane, Lincoln Center Directors Lab, Ma-Yi, New Dramatists, NOW Africa, Page 73, PEN World Voices, Royal Shakespeare Company, Soho Rep Writer/Director Lab and WNYC.