The ALLIANCE THEATRE Lab returns to the South Florida theatre scene with the announcement of its 2009/2010 season. The Alliance, 'dedicated to producing contemporary dramatic works which give voice to the outsider,' is preparing to bring its vision to the Miami area with four works: Swimming in the Shallows by Adam Bock (Fall 2009), Orphans by Lyle Kessler (Winter 2010), Coyote on a Fence by Bruce Graham (Spring 2010), and Martin McDonagh's A Skull in Connemara (Summer 2010).
Swimming in the Shallows starts off the ALLIANCE THEATRE Lab's season on a lighter note. Described by the DC Theatre Scene as a "quirky little comedy with surreal touches," Adam Bock's work deals with three couples: Carla Carla and Donna, who debate over having a commitment ceremony; Barb and Bob, whose marriage is eroding under the accumulation of physical and emotional junk; and Nick, a commitment-phobe who falls in love with a shark at the local aquarium. This "screwy little jewel of a play" (New York Times) is a fast-paced and charming look at the nature of unconventional love.
The Alliance then returns to its more serious roots with Lyle Kessler's contemporary classic, Orphans. First produced by the famed Steppenwolf Theatre, Orphans is the story of two brothers - Phillip, a wildchild naïf whose illiteracy and innocence belie a feral intelligence; and Treat, a switchblade-wielding thief who manipulates his brother into remaining dependent on him. Into this den of dysfunction comes Harold, a not-so-legitimate businessman who takes the "Dead End Kids" under his tutelage. At its core, Orphans is a warped father-and-son story, with all of the realism and none of the saccharine.
In the spring, the Alliance presents the south Florida premiere of Coyote on a Fence by Bruce Graham. This "thought-provoking work about man's inhumanity to man" (The Stage) examines capital punishment through the differing viewpoints of two death-row inmates. John, a well-educated liberal who rages against the practice that will end his life at the point of a hypodermic needle, gets a new cell-mate: Bobby, an unabashed racist and anti-Semite who looks at his execution as the gateway to the God who told him to kill.
Finally, Managing Director Skye Whitcomb directs his first show for the Alliance with another south Florida premiere: A Skull in Connemara, the second play in playwright Martin McDonagh's Lennane trilogy. The New York Times praises the play's "gleeful, bone-crushing antics," while Variety applauded McDonagh's "distinctive blend of J.M. Synge's warmth and Quentin Tarantino's heartlessness." Set in Galway, Ireland, A Skull in Connemara introduces us to a quartet of besotted, beguiling characters, whose empty lives are filled with sly gossip, witty banter, and rotgut poteen. Mick's job is to clear out old graves in the overflowing cemetery in order to make room for new burials. But when the time comes for his deceased wife Oona's grave to be emptied, old rumors of how Oona really died start spreading, mallets start coming out, and bits of tibia and ulna start flying about the stage.
The ALLIANCE THEATRE Lab is a Miami-based performance arts institution dedicated to the creation of challenging and provocative works of Contemporary Theatre. The Alliance performs at the Main Street Playhouse, located at 6766 Main Street in Miami Lakes, Florida. For more information, please contact 305.259.0418 or visit their website at www.thealliancetheatrelab.com.