This is How it Goes


By Neil Labute

Directed by Ami Sallee

Jan. 25 – Feb. 11, 2007

Thu. – Sat. 8pm, Sun. 4pm

Tickets: $19.50 – $24.50

Shimberg Playhouse, Straz Center for the Performing Arts

Media Cast & Crew Patron Reviews Season

The southeastern US premiere!

(L-R) Ryan McCarthy, David Dolphy and Heather Scheffel in Jobsite's This is How it Goes.The black jock, the fat dork and the white cheerleader – 12 years later. In true Neil LaBute (The Shape of Things, Fat Pig, In the Company of Men) fashion, 45-degree turns run rampant, keeping both the audience and characters on their toes. He targets small town middle America for a new tale of manipulation, exploitation, race and infidelity through the story of an interracial love triangle.

Belinda and Cody Phipps are a typical Midwestern couple: teenage sweethearts, children, luxurious home. Typical… except Cody is “rich, black and different,” according to Belinda, who is white and becomes attracted to a former classmate (Ryan McCarthy) who is also white and acts as the show’s untrustworthy narrator.

As the men battle for her affections, Belinda and Cody frankly doubt the foundation of their initial attraction, opening the door wide to a swath of bigotry and betrayal. Staged on continually shifting moral ground that challenges our notions about gender, ethnicity and even love itself, This Is How It Goes fearlessly explores the myriad ways in which the wild card of race is played by both black and white in America.

“Neil LaBute is the first dramatist since David Mamet and Sam Shepard – since Edward Albee, actually – to mix sympathy and savagery, pathos and power.” – Donald Lyons, New York Post

“LaBute [is] our American Aesop, a mad moral fabulist serving stiff tonic for our country’s sin – sick souls.” – John Istel, American Theatre

“It is edgy, challenging, profane, violent and raw, sometimes offensive, sometimes shocking, but always, always riveting…. This is actors’ theater at its best and exciting to watch.” – Tampa Tribune

This Is How It Goes is a very fresh and often very funny twist on a romantic comedy it’s good old-fashioned black-box theater. The characters are rich and interesting, and the actors make the most of them.” – St. Petersburg Times

“4 stars. A top-notch Jobsite production…. Easily [LaBute’s] most profound, incisive and far-reaching play.” – Creative Loafing

Cast & Crew

  • Ami Sallee – Director


  • David Dolphy – Cody
  • Ryan McCarthy – Man
  • Heather Scheffel – Woman
  • Erica Porch – Stage Manager


  • Christen Petitt Hailey – Costume Designer
  • John Lott – Light Designer
  • Brian M. Smallheer – Set Designer

Patron Reviews

As good as The Pillowman. I had seen both in London a couple of years ago. We will see at least one more this year – get a membership next year. – John Rowe

We loved This is How it Goes. – Gordon Hessler

This show embodies what I like most about Jobsite productions. – David Hood

I really loved This is how it goes. I went to see it twice. The play was very honest and allowed the audience to draw their own conclusions about what was going on. It definitely will make you think and look at things differently. – Marie Lamadieu

This Is How It Goes was a powerful production – uncomfortable at times, but I believe that’s what good theater does: It raises publicly thoughts and attitudes and actions that would be reprehensible in real life and forces us to confront them. – Michael Kilgore

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