Jose Rivera’s Obie-winning (off-Broadway) play—which originally debuted at the 1992 Humana Festival of New American Plays at Actors Theatre of Louisville—is chock-full of so many social, theological and post-apocalyptic ideas that the resulting discussion alone is worth the price of admission. The story concerns a young Hispanic New York copy editor who lives in a tough Bronx neighborhood and narrowly avoids being attacked on the subway. The appearance of her guardian angel clues us in to the fact that Marisol may have passed into some transitory state—purgatory perhaps—though her subsequent Inferno-like experiences seem real enough as she encounters a world turned upside-down: Armies of homeless roam the streets, Nazi skinheads wreak violence, government and the environment are in chaos, coffee is extinct (!), men can bear children and people are thrown into jail for maxing out their credit cards. (Maybe that last one isn’t so farfetched.) But the spiritual battleground lies elsewhere, for with the decline of civilization and the waning influence of God comes a struggle among all the heavenly hosts and a message of non-divine self-reliance for the people of the earth. Actors Bridge Ensemble brings Nashville the local premiere of this galvanizing think-piece. Vali Forrister directs, and the promising cast features both worthy vets (Misty Lewis, Pete Vann and Jessika Malone) and newer faces (Cynthia Tucker and Fiona Soul).
Thursdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 2:30 p.m. Starts: July 25. Continues through Aug. 3, 2008


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