“The set is on fire. The interrogation has started. The flood waters are rising. Three sleepers – a devoted son, an Eastern European actress and a Canadian man on the run – awaken to the fact that a mysterious corporation connects them.”
Ken Urban has written an existential play that binds the lives of three separate strangers who seem to be in dream, or more accurate, nightmare states, but wake up to find they are all connected and pawns of a corporation engaged in scientific experiments. One, Gabrielle (Lori Prince), a wife (also known as Tanya) to a man who works for the corporation, but she never knew what he did —- a daughter Celeste? No, she’s not her real mother. Celeste’s real mother went to father’s (Jeff Biehl) workplace, never to return. Gabrielle’s dream state is of a Russian actress playing a child prostitute. ‘Bleh! I am actress Gabrielle,yes!”
Nate (Maulik Pancholy – 30 Rock) is a Canadian, a teacher now in America, suddenly arrested and finds himself in a small cell being terrorized, as he thinks about his parents at home wondering about him – a dream? All too real. Try to forget the terror, the horror, the beatings.
Malcolm (Andy Phelan), a loving son, visiting his mother (Dee Nelson) – suddenly water is gushing in, a tsunami, the bed washes away, they float away. Are they the only ones left? Mom sleeps on a white comforter but can they be saved? Can he save her?
The lives of these three strangers touch precipitously as they meet and share the realities and “dreams” that reshape each one’s existence, changing them forever. Do we wish we could sometimes stay asleep rather than face a new world, realities we wish did not exist?
This unusual play, directed by Adam Fitzgerald, was developed at the Donmar Warehouse, Primary Stages, the Theatre at Boston Court and Portland Stage Company. It continues at 59e59 Theaters thru September 8th. www.59e59.org