“If you want to tell people the truth, make them laugh. Otherwise, they’ll kill you”- Oscar Wilde.
These words could not be personified more fully than in Rajiv Joseph’s contemporary classic, Gruesome Playground Injuries, being performed by The Flying Muskrats this July 10-19th at 8 pm at The James Lee Community Center Theatre.
At heart, Gruesome is really a character study. The characters are Doug (Ben Peter) and Kayleen (Caity Brown), who each find different reasons to hurt themselves, from when they are eight years old until they approach forty. What is exceptional about Rajiv Joseph’s script, though, is the relentless reality that he seems to encapsulate in his writing. We see two exceptionally funny, charming, relatable people, and they make us question ourselves, all while laughing endlessly.
The Muskrats love summer comedies-we’ve done a lot of those. So why Gruesome? We couldn’t completely stray from the laughs, but we read the play, and found that we all identified with script in one way or another. We also loved the blend of comedy with the serious questions Joseph poses, and saw the potential for some amazing acting. We got lucky, and were able to cast two brilliant actors, who are worth far higher admission prices than the $10-16 we’re charging.
Another thing you’ll see in our production of Gruesome is some seriously awesome special effects makeup. Wes Johnson (any Skyrim, Oblivion, Fallout, or Washington Capitals fans out there? You’ll know Wes’ voice) and Ava Hockenberry do an amazing job making doug bloody, bruised, and battered throughout the eight scenes. From an eye blown out, to a split open face, you’re in for some seriously gruesome effects.
Lets review: Laughs, Tears, Amazing acting and Awesome makeup. Why wouldn’t you come see Gruesome Playground Injuries?
Gruesome Playground Injuries plays July 10, 11, 12, 17, 18, 19 at 8:00 pm at the James Lee Community Center Theatre-2855 Annandale Road, in Falls Church, VA. For tickets, purchase them online, or at the door.