Milk Like Sugar

by  Kirsten Greenidge

Full Length Play, Drama  /  2m, 5f

“Kirsten Greenidge's fast-talking, victim-taking New York debut" - Entertainment Weekly

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Milk Like Sugar

by  Kirsten Greenidge

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  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    2m, 5f
  • Duration


    90 minutes
  • SubGenre


    Not Applicable
  • Accolades


    Obie, From Off-Broadway
  • Suggested Use

    Suggested Use

    • Monologues
    • Scene work
  • Audience

    Target Audience

    • Adult
    • Teen (Age 14 - 18)

Additional Info

It is Annie Desmond’s sixteenth birthday and her friends have decided to help her celebrate in style, complete with a brand new tattoo. Before her special night is over, however, Annie and her friends enter into a life altering pact. When Annie tries to make good on her promise to her friends, she is forced to take a good look at the world that surrounds her. She befriends Malik, who promises a bright future, and Keera, whose evangelical leanings inspire Annie in a way her young parents have not been able to do. In the end Annie’s choices propel her onto an irreversible path in this story that combines wit, poetry, and hope.

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  • Winner! 2012 Obie Award for Playwriting
    Winner! 2011 Edgerton Foundation New American Play Award
    Winner! 2011 San Diego Critics Circle Craig Noel Award for Outstanding New Play



"A distinctive view of a matter of vital currency, crisply delineated characters who reveal more layers as the play proceeds, richly funny vernacular dialogue… Milk Like Sugar delivers piercing glimpses of the way underachievement and unhappiness are passed down from generation to generation.” - The New York Times

Milk Like Sugar’s remarkable features include its locale, an urban, African-American subworld that displays, for once, neither the brutalizing clichés of a poverty-stricken ghetto nor the discomfiting artificiality of a talented-tenth safe haven. Instead, Greenidge populates her story with a sampling of the innumerable young people between those extremes." - The Village Voice

"Greenidge’s crackling, often humorous dialogue is in the vernacular of inner-city residents who deliberately distort language…Metaphors about flames, burning and flying are nicely woven throughout the story, along with lyrical symbolic imagery.” - The Associated Press

“Kirsten Greenidge's fast-talking, victim-taking New York debut" - Entertainment Weekly

"Greenidge captures girl speak in unnerving perfection" - The Daily News

"The title refers to the sweet powdered milk that offers far more flavor than nutritional value. But the tart Milk Like Sugar offers plenty of both" - The New York Post


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  • Milk Like Sugar - NY Premiere
  • Director Rebecca Taichman on "Milk Like Sugar"
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Performing Groups

  • College Theatre / Student
  • Community Theatre
  • Professional Theatre
  • Large Stage
  • Blackbox / Second Stage /Fringe Groups


  • Caution Alcohol Alcohol
  • Caution Intense Adult Intense Adult Themes
  • Caution Strong Language Strong Language

License details

  • Minimum Fee: $100 per performance



  • Time Period: Contemporary, Present Day, New Millennium/21st Century
  • Duration: 90 minutes
  • Setting: Inner-city, U.S.A. Present Day. Annie's mothers apartment, her school, a rooftop, and a tattoo parlor.
  • Additional Features: No intermission
  • Features / Contains: Contemporary Costumes / Street Clothes


  • Musical Style: N/A (Not a musical)
  • Vocal Demands: N/A (Not a musical)
  • Chorus Size: N/A (Not a musical)


2m, 5f
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Cast Attributes

  • Role(s) for Black Actor(s)
  • Roles for Teens
  • Multicultural casting
  • Strong Role for Leading Woman (Star Vehicle)



Kirsten Greenidge

Kirsten Greenidge has had commissions from Magic Theatre, McCarter Theatre and Guthrie Theatre. Her play Sans-Culottes in the Promised Land was produced at the 2004 Humana Festival at the Actors Theatre of Louisville. The play has also been at Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Madison Repertory Theatre’s Fall Festival of th ...

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Playwrights Horizons, Inc., Women’s Project Productions and La Jolla Playhouse produced the New York City premiere of Milk Like Sugar Off Broadway in 2011.

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