The Ensemble Theatre’s “Tribes” Earns 4.5 Star LCT Rating

Dale Dymkoski and Kelly Mengelkoch in "Tribes"
Dale Dymkoski and Kelly Mengelkoch in “Tribes”

Panelists for the League of Cincinnati Theatres (LCT) have recognized Ensemble Theatre’s production of Tribes with a 4.5 Star Rating.

Tribes centers around Billy, the deaf son of a fiercely outspoken family obsessed with self-expression. He has adapted brilliantly to his family’s unconventional ways, but they’ve never bothered to return the favor. However, when he finds a new family in the deaf community, tensions reach an all-time high in this touching play about membership in your tribe.

Panelists described Tribes as “an important play…another coup for the Ensemble theatre and I am sure people will flock to this excellent production.” Actors Dale Dymkoski, as Billy, and Kelly Mengelkoch, as Sylvia were praised in their leading roles: “They were able to convey such emotion with few or no words and I was just mesmerized in their comfort level… Mengelkoch is an actress at the top of her game, giving a wonderfully nuanced and delicate performance.” Panelists were impressed with Michael Evan Haney’s direction: “Great ensembles are not created by accident. No matter how talented the individual actors may be, it takes a skilled director to blend and mold an ensemble of this caliber. Michael Evan Haney once again proves that he is one of the best directors in Cincinnati.”

Panelists also singled out Brian Mehring for his scenic design and Fitz Patton for sound design. “Brian Mehring’s set and lighting turned a normal house into something spectacular… meticulous to detail and creative.” “The sound design was intriguing, especially in conveying the silence that Billy hears, or the buzzing of his hearing aids….exceptional, real and believable.”

Tribes continues through February 16th. Tickets can be purchased at

League of Cincinnati Theatre panelists evaluate productions on a 5 star scale and recommend shows at either a 4 star or 5 star level. Nominations for LCT awards will be determined and announced at the end of the season and winners awarded at the annual LCT gala in the spring.

Dale Dymkoski and Kelly Mengelkoch in “Tribes”