As always, Big Idea has selected plays that represent a wide variety of styles and themes. This season’s shows are an exciting mix of old and new comedies and dramas that will strike a chord with our audience. Whether they are timeless stories re-written for a modern audience, or modern stories written in a timeless fashion, these stories are provocative and entertaining.
A ship is wrecked on the rocks. Viola is washed ashore but her twin brother Sebastian is lost. Determined to survive on her own, she steps out to explore a new land. So begins a whirlwind of mistaken identity and unrequited love. The nearby beachside nightclubs of Olivia and Orsino are overrun with passion. Even Olivia’s upright employee Malvolio is swept up in the madness. Where music is the food of love, and nobody is quite what they seem, anything proves possible.
“It wasn’t me. It was the black hole.” With these words, a temp worker named Genny launches us on an epic, fantastical journey through corporate America, Appalachia, astrophysics and beyond. TempOdyssey tells the story of a young woman who’s convinced she’s the goddess of death. Fleeing the imminent creation of a black hole on one side of the country, she lands smack in the middle of a bomb manufacturing company on the other. Her only hope lies in the unlikely guise of a nameless temp who considers himself immortal. Can he help Genny cast off her dark mythology once and for all? Or will she explode, taking all of downtown Seattle with her? Dan Dietz melds the absurdity of contemporary cubicle life with the epic poetics of Greek mythology, and the results are hilarious, horrifying and ultimately uplifting.
In Collective Rage, the lives of five very different New York women named Betty collide at the intersection of anger, sex and “theat-ah.” As they meet, fall in love, rehearse, revel and rage, they realize that they’ve been stuck reading the same scripts for far too long. They all come from different backgrounds, and are bored or angry about different things, but the Betty’s – each one numbered 1-5 – come together to rehearse a new version of Pyramus and Thisbe, the play within a play in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. What follows are discoveries, transformations and raucous comedy. Hitting the ring with an electrifying soundtrack, looks to kill and spectacular routines, this outrageous comedy packs the punch to shatter lacquered femininity into a thousand glittering pieces. Strongly influenced by cabaret and female drag, this exquisite rejection of shame and stereotype will punch you in the gut, break your heart and then take you dancing.
A foul-mouthed twenty-something comedian and a middle-aged man embroiled in a nasty divorce are brought together unexpectedly when their cancer-stricken mothers become roommates in the hospital. Together, this unlikely duo must negotiate some of life’s biggest challenges…while making some of the world’s most inappropriate jokes. Can these two very lost people learn to laugh through their pain and lean on each other, when all they really want to do is run away?
Generations ago, humans retreated deep underground after an environmental disaster ruined the world above. Nature is now simulated through brain-implanted chips, and fertility is regulated to keep the surviving population in balance. Anna and Oliver want to have a baby, and their options are running out.