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RX MACHINA Comes to Boston Playwrights' Theatre

Running from February 17-27, the play is directed by Blair Cadden.

Boston Playwrights' Theatre (BPT) continues its 2021-22 season with Rx Machina by Caity-Shea Violette. Running from February 17-27, the play is directed by Blair Cadden.

The drama examines big pharma's impact on everyday American culture through the eyes of five women on the frontlines of the opioid epidemic, blurring ethical boundaries in a love triangle fueled by money, sex and power.

"The heart of this play was inspired by experience as a chronic pain patient during the third wave of the opioid epidemic," says Violette, who began writing the play in early 2020. "My chronic pain disorder took about a decade to be accurately diagnosed, so I encountered a lot of misdiagnoses and care plans that unintentionally caused a lot of harm in my life. At the same time, I know and love many healthcare providers, including some close family members who work in the pain management field, so I've seen the crisis from a number of perspectives."

Violette says she hopes the production will inspire conversations about the healthcare system in the U.S.

"It's no secret that the healthcare system in America is deeply broken, but I hope the storytelling is able to give a human lens to this larger systemic issue in a way that statistics alone sometimes fail to achieve."

Violette is the recipient of numerous national awards for playwriting, including the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival's (KCACTF) Jean Kennedy Smith Playwriting and Gary Garrison National Ten-Minute Play Awards, and a 2020 Gold Prize win in Portland Stage's Clauder Competition for Rx Machina. She is a member of Boston University's M.F.A. Playwriting Program class of 2021. Director Cadden is a Boston-based director, dramaturg and teaching artist who received her M.F.A. in Directing from Boston University in 2021. Cadden is the co-founder of Charleston, S.C.'s 5th Wall Productions, and her directing credits include Red Bike, Time Stands Still, Spring Awakening and The Last Days of Judas Iscariot.

All the plays in BPT's 2021-22 season were written by the Boston University M.F.A. Playwriting Program class of 2021. Originally slated for the 2020-2021 season, the productions were postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. The plays are co-produced with the Boston University College of Fine Arts School of Theatre as part of its New Play Initiative.

BPT's season concludes in April with Beasts by Cayenne Douglass.

BPT requires proof of full COVID-19 vaccination (two weeks after second dose in primary series) for all patrons, regardless of age, to attend our performances; booster doses are strongly recommended. Audiences are required to wear masks for the duration of their visit. Up-to-the-minute information regarding performance schedules, COVID-19 protocols and ticketing can be found on the BPT website ( under Visit Us > COVID-19 Safety.

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