It’s not every day that an all-male ensemble, starring a gay couple, cooks onstage. Such is the magic of The Hot Wing King, from Katori Hall and directed by Steve H. Broadnax III. The play with a sitcom feel won a Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 2021 for being a “deeply felt consideration of Black masculinity.” A fry crew in Memphis, dubbed the New Wing Order, is dead set on winning an annual chicken wing competition. Adding a little bourbon-infused bacon into the mix can’t hurt. Cordell Crutchfield and his boyfriend, Dwayne, have to hone their recipe while navigating family drama. Both get a little intense when a teen nephew enters the picture. “Cooking is so theatrical, really, and food is such a key to community that it’s a real masterstroke from Katori to use the high-stakes setting of an amateur cooking contest to show us a loving relationship at a moment of change, and the ways this community of Black men show up for their friends,” says Studio Theatre artistic director David Muse. June 22 to July 31 at Studio Theatre, 1501 14th St. NW. $50-$95.
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