Mind Your Language

Parents have to make choices constantly. For instance, let’s say you and your children are all super-intelligent and hyperverbal. You have one more child who’s just like the rest of you -- except he’s deaf. In your world, with your experiences, you might choose not to have him learn sign language. He’ll learn to read lips and speak, and you’ll have kept him from appearing “different.” As he grows up, he’s isolated from most of the deaf community. But you don’t even know that’s a thing until Billy brings home a young woman who's signed with her deaf parents since infancy and is now losing her own hearing.

This is just a taste of 2012’s Drama Desk Award Winner Tribes, the next production at Phoenix Theatre’s new Black Box. There’s also Billy’s funky mom, dad, and siblings. And romance, and an exploration of what we take for granted about human communication and the many forms it takes. We can’t wait. Tribes opens at 8 p.m. Thursday, January 30, at 100 East McDowell Road. Tickets through Sunday, February 16, start at $30 at or 602-254-2151.

Thursdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Saturdays, 3 p.m.; Sundays, 3 p.m. Starts: Jan. 30. Continues through Feb. 16, 2014