Written by Julia Lederer and directed by Emily Lotspeich, "Reality Theatre" is a fast-moving collection that explores our anxieties about change, the acceleration of technology, and maintaining human relationships in a world quickly becoming less and less human. “It's All in the Timing” meets “Black Mirror.” Reality and fantasy blur for a woman playing a spoon in “Beauty and the Beast.” A man reconsiders a contract signed in blood. The World Wide Web disappears into thin air. "Reality Theatre" is a collection of interwoven one-act plays about people who are stuck as the world changes around them in strange ways. Eight plays. Four storylines. One hour.
"Reality Theatre" opens at 8 p.m. Feb. 23 and runs through March 9. Admission is $15, and performances are at 8 p.m. Sundays and Mondays at Trap Door Theatre, 1655 West Cortland Street, Chicago.
Playwright Julia Lederer is an internationally acclaimed writer from Toronto. She started as a playwright and has had productions in Los Angeles, Chicago, Alaska, Paris, Vancouver, Brighton, Texas, New York, Toronto, among others. For television, she was selected from more than 800 applications to work on the fourth season of Kim's Convenience as part of CBC's Emerging Writers Room in 2018. She has written four short films that continue to screen all over the world, like at festivals including TIFF, Aesthetica, Cinequest, Atlantic International Film Festival, Breakthroughs, ETC. She currently is adapting her hit play “With Love and a Major Organ” into a feature film. She has been called “a brash, poetic, and fiercely original voice” by NOW Magainze, and Chicago Stage Standards says, "Lederer has a deliciously twisted way with words."
Director Emily Lotspeich was born in Cincinnati where she attended School for Creative and Performing Arts from grades 4-12. There she majored in acting, directing, creative writing and oboe. She came to call Chicago home when she moved here to further her theater education at DePaul University. Her Trap Door director credits include “Tango” and “Universal Wolf.” Her Trap Door assistant director credits are for “Beholder: and the twentieth-anniversary remount of R. W. Fassbinder’s “Blood on the Cat’s Neck.” Her Trap Door acting credits include “Love and Information,” “Monsieur D’eon Is A Woman,” “Sad Happy Suckers,” “Locketeer,” “Phaedra,” “Fantasy Island For Dummies,” “The Duchess of Malfi,” “AmeriKafka,” “12 Ophelias” and “Anger/Fly.”
The show features co-director and stage manager Michael Mejia, lighting designer Gary Damico, and a cast of Kevin Webb, Mark Pontarelli, Abby Blankenship, Seth Wilson, Josh Bernaski, Emily Lotspeich, and Natara Easter.
For 25 years, Trap Door has been the foremost purveyor of experimental, European style theatre in Chicago. In keeping with its promise to foster innovative forms of expression, Trap Door opens up its space to company members, as well as guest artists, for the development of new work and performances that exist outside the realm of a traditional theatrical run as part of Trap Open. These performances and workshops occur sporadically throughout the prime-time season as additional offerings during weeknights and late nights. Whether it is a workshop of a bold new play, a daylong performance installation, or a collaboration with artists from other mediums, Trap Open offers audiences thrilling, unexpected experiences while granting resident artists the opportunity to take risks that push their artistic practices to new heights.
Tickets are available now at trapdoortheatre.com, 773-384-0494, or by emailing email@example.com.
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