From the moment the audience passes the Planetarium Usher and crosses the threshold of the Alliance Black Box Theatre, we are transported to, dare I say... Outer Spaaaaaaaace! Between Preston Goodson's interSTELLAR sound scape and Jamie Bullins/Cody Russell's FAR-OUT set design/scenic artistry, it is clear that we are in for one spectacular experience.
We follow the galactic story of out-of-towner Arugula and her father, Nancy, as they try to assimilate with us humans to study and potentially save our planet and it's disappearing atmosphere. In earnestness that surpasses a Leave It To Beaver episode, the two explore our world full of friendships, salads, the Beatles, and Roller Derby. But can a 16 year-old alien descendant from a 'proud and warlike people" navigate the social web that is high school? Can her father put down the salad and stay out of prison long enough to save our world? These are but a few questions put forth by playwright Mora V. Harris. Space Girl is a world premiere directed by Julie Skrzypek, and produced by our friends at The Weird Sisters Theatre Project.
The laughs subside and we catch our breath long enough to realize just how hard it is to be a person. The play weaves the human condition into each zany and sometimes tragic moment as gracefully as an Amazonian Jammer weaves amongst the gang of Blockers, scoring point after point as the audience's hearts break and elate. In one pivotal moment of the play, a discouraged and depressed father asks Arugula's best friend, Charlotte, what she'd present to aliens if we humans were to perish. Her response is so absolutely human down to our very DNA that it pains the heart. "[If aliens only had one thing of us] I'd want it to be books. So at least they would know people tried."
For some of us, the simple act of trying to rise from our bed can seem daunting.
Or answering the phone.
Or leaving the house.
Or interacting with people.
Or being a good friend.
Or being a good lover.
Or being a good daughter.
Or being a good father.
Or being a good person.
Against the insurmountable obstacles we face on a daily basis, we, as one united entity, have tried. And damn it, we should be immensely proud of that. For anyone who has ever found it difficult to human and would like to witness an OUT-OF-THIS-WORLD cast bring you to laughter and tears, Space Girl is a must see. The show runs through Aug. 20th. Treat yourself and take it in!
Editor's Note: One must ask the question: How long did it take to place the hundreds of glow-in-the-dark stars around the entire room, and how long will it take to withdraw them into the black-hole that is Strike. Science can only hypothesize.