Renaissance in the Belly of a Killer Whale | Theatre Philadelphia
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Renaissance in the Belly of a Killer Whale

Meet Bridget, Shayla, and Toni: three women who chronicle the gentrification of their beloved Harlem by journeying through the streets, history, landmarks, and changing culture of their neighborhood. Through a fusion of theatre, dance, song and spoken word poetry, Renaissance will draw you into these women’s youthful stories in deeply moving and uproariously funny ways.


What Barrymore Voters Are Saying

"Renaissance in the Belly of a Killer Whale was the most imaginative and thought-provoking play about gentrification I've ever seen."

"This show was an entertaining theatrical experience for the entire seventy minutes. I thoroughly enjoyed this show. I learned about the effects of gentrification on a community, and the affects on the people that dwell within. This was a very eye-opening, and thought provoking piece of theatre that really resonated with me. This show resembled similarities between “Harlem” (the community in the play) and the gentrification occurring right here in Philadelphia today."

"Through this experience, I have come to realize that gentrification may not exactly be a bad thing either. It diversifies the masses, revitalizes communities, and everyone benefits; or so we think. The actual downside to gentrification, is that it can inhibit lesser fortunate people from opportunities to lease, rent or even own properties in their own neighborhoods. Sure, it may bring them access to higher priced organic supermarkets, yoga studios, or luxury high-rises; but these people simply can not afford it."

"This play showed me that, people are not afraid to adapt, they simply do not want to lose the essence of the home they love. This production was absolutely well done."

"The stage production of Renaissance in the Belly of a Killer Whale was powerfully and persuasively performed by a excellent cast of actors. The plot was strong and the direction precise along with the actors bringing well written characters to life individually, all with convincing, powerful performances. The set, lighting and costume designs worked well together and were excellent in supporting their perspective roles for the narrative of the play. This play was very thought provoking and engaging from it's opening to the very end in dealing with a pervasive societal issue that plagues our nations communities currently in an insightful and entertaining production."


Jaylene Clark Owens
Hollis Heath
Janelle Heatley
Chyann Sapp


Jaylene Clark Owens


Barrymore Recommended
Closing Soon
Feb 26 - Mar 7, 2020
Buy Tickets
from $15

Box Office



The Wilma Theater
265 S. Broad Street
Philadelphia, PA 19107
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