The inaugural production from LA’s most fissionable theater company brings two short plays from two of downtown New York’s most provocative voices in an examination of verbal sparring, theoretical torture, human cruelty and the fragility of life, love and friendship.
Directed by Uranium Madhouse Artistic Director, Andrew Utter, “Conversation Storm,” is a giddy shotgun marriage of Chekhov and Brecht, reuniting three friends in a quiet café after a 20-year separation. The friends quickly resume their custom of parry and riposte in a dissection of the question of torture. As they talk, an intricate game evolves, entailing time loops and role-playing. They imagine the unimaginable, save Manhattan, fail Manhattan, conjure atrocities, salvage humanity and try to get a glass of water from an inattentive waiter, all while attempting to answer the question, “Are people fungible?”
“Conversation Storm” jolts audiences from detached definitions of officially sanctioned interrogation techniques and confronts us with the real world consequences of our choices.
“Conversation Storm” was written by Rick Burkhardt, the co-creator of Three Pianos, which recently completed a triumphant run in New York and which the Wall Street Journal described as “a hilarious, yet wise, examination of friendship, depression and classical music.” We feel that “Conversation Storm” is the ideal piece with which to introduce ourselves to the Los Angeles community, in that it simultaneously interrogates urgent political matters, the limits of friendship and the theatrical situation itself.
“The House of Cards” written by Charles Mee and also directed by Andrew Utter, continues the investigation of the breadth of human experience. A lone individual builds a house of cards while recounting memories of nostalgic longing, shocking cruelty, ephemeral beauty and calculated violence. To whom are these memories addressed? What does this person want? Why build a house of cards? Will the house stand? For how long? What causes the cards we’ve played to come crashing down around us?