Dead Man's Cell Phone
$17, $13 students
Dead Man’s Cell Phone explores the paradox of modern technology’s ability to both unite and isolate people in the digital age. The play, written by Sarah Ruhl, describes the fragmentation of conversations, voices and lives, moves irreverently among subjects like mortality and memory, the selling of body parts, obsession with stationary paper, lobster bisque, the afterlife, and, of course, the eponymous cell phone.
Dead Man’s Cell Phone opens as Jean is sitting quietly at a cafe when she becomes increasingly frustrated at the endlessly ringing cellphone on the table next to her. Its owner won’t answer it and Jean soon realizes it is because he’s dead. In her panic, she begins answering the insistent phone calls. As she attends the dead man’s funeral and learns of his acquaintances, she learns that “the machine in the pocket means that wherever you are present, you are potentially absent too.”
The play was awarded a Helen Hayes Award for Outstanding New Play. Ruhl is fast making a name for herself as a writer of romantic comedies. Following The Clean House, which was a finalist for the 2005 Pulitzer Prize, and Ruhl’s designation as a MacArthur Fellow in 2006, Dead Man’s Cell Phone opened to generous enthusiasm.
Robert Hall directs an all-local cast starring Jessica Diamond, Luann Pamatian, Travis king, Susie Shipman, Michelle Cartier, and Kelly Toombs in Ruhl’s play opening June 22 and running for two weekends on OffCenter Stage at Orcas Center. Experience this play in the intimate setting of the OffCenter Stage where both director and actors delve deeply into the craft of acting to convey a story that peels away the layers of the digital age and reveals the heart.
Dead Man’s Cell Phone will run for six performances, June 22-24, June 30-July 1, 7:30 pm and July 2, 2:00 pm.
There will be a reception following the Opening Night production June 22 in the Black Box. OffCenter productions sell out quickly so don’t wait to get your tickets!