When Collapse opens tonight at Curious Theatre, it will actually be the second premiere of the new play by continuing Curious collaborator Allison Moore -- evidence of the troupe's ongoing commitment to producing fresh material as part of the National New Play Network's rolling world-premiere program. The first premiere of Collapse was in Berkeley, and there will be a third in Dallas early next year; the productions are designed to give the playwright some wiggle room over a year's time, so that she can tighten and improve the work. But in the meantime, the Curious version of this play-in-progress, inspired by a true tragedy that serves as a rhetorical device, promises to keep audiences laughing...to keep from crying.
"The thing that is so interesting about this play is that it was written in an emotional response to the I-35W bridge collapse in Minneapolis," explains Curious artistic director Chip Walton. "Allison does a great job of using that as a metaphor for what happens when things in our world collapse. The breadth of characterizations covered has an incredibly broad appeal. There's a little bit of everything in this; you'd be hard-pressed to go to this play and not find a point of personal intersection. And it's really, really funny, and that gives us an opportunity to think about the concept of the play in a way that gives some space around it."
In that way, Collapse also falls right into Curious's goal of making audiences think. "The play doesn't give any answers, which is good, because we don't like plays at Curious that give answers," Walton adds. "What I do know is that following all of the characters in this play not only gives us insight, but also a healthy dose of humor, which frankly we can all use right now."
Collapse continues through December 10 at Curious Theatre, 1080 Acoma Street. Tickets are $18 to $42; for more information, go to www.curioustheatre.org or call 303-623-0524.
Thursdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 2 p.m.; Sat., Nov. 26, 2 p.m. Starts: Nov. 3. Continues through Dec. 10, 2011