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Refracted Theatre Company to Present the World Premiere of ST. SEBASTIAN

St. Sebastian is Refracted Theatre Company’s Chicago debut production. The play is a dark comedy with a disturbing edge.

Refracted Theatre Company to Present the World Premiere of ST. SEBASTIAN

Refracted Theatre Company is launching its inaugural Chicago season with the world premiere of Andrew Kramer's dark comedy St. Sebastian, directed by Artistic Director Graham Miller. This three-hander about a queer white couple that moves into a historically Black neighborhood will be presented September 15 - October 2, 2022 at The Den Theatre (2B), 1331 N. Milwaukee Ave. in Chicago's Wicker Park neighborhood. Casting will be announced shortly. Tickets go on sale Monday July 11, 2022 at thedentheatre.com. The press opening is Friday, September 16 at 8 pm.

St. Sebastian is Refracted Theatre Company's Chicago debut production. The play is a dark comedy with a disturbing edge. Ben convinces his much younger boyfriend Gideon to move out of their apartment in the city to flip a house... but he leaves out that the new house is in a historically (and currently) Black neighborhood. When Ben befriends and employs a local neighborhood kid named Reuben, the blurry line between ignorance, activism and fear lays bare how perniciously racism hides just beyond the face of "wokeness." After five years of development on St. Sebastian, Playwright Andrew Kramer (Armature), whose plays have been seen across the country and internationally, will work with a team of Refracted artists to deliver his beautiful, complex work on stage, fully produced for the first time.

Playwright Andrew Kramer comments, "In a time where political and social discourse often seems more like a battle bootlessly fought than a connective campaign of hope, I'm thrilled to introduce Chicago audiences to Refracted Theatre Company's world premiere production of St. Sebastian. Our words are our weapons we use to wound and our language our link to healing; if the COVID-quarantine/the country's racial reckoning of summertime 2020 has taught us anything, it's that being restricted to close quarters with loved ones can be as frustratingly difficult as it can be lovely and comforting. As we return to live theatre, St. Sebastian seeks to explore the ways in which our most intimate relationships can also become the most volatile - especially when we disagree about matters of sexuality, race, religion and responsibility. Through lean mean-muscle theatrics and confronting, propulsive language, we're refracting the questions of St. Sebastian directly to attending audiences: how can we learn to speak and listen just the same, instead of barking through the fence, like rabid dogs, at the faces of those with whom we disagree?"

Director Graham Miller adds, "From the title alone, St. Sebastian, I think people will have preconceived notions of what this play is. And to be honest, that's kind of perfect, because this play is about just that...our latent prejudices that keep us from seeing things as individual, and the struggle to fit the individual into a larger context. Everyone who has read early drafts has reacted by saying they were surprised by the way it twists itself deeper into knots - knots that I believe will leave an audience thinking about their daily interactions for a long time. This play provides an opportunity for us to see ourselves and each other with more clarity, and that can be uncomfortable... and that's okay! In fact, it's necessary, but it needn't be treacherous. It can be hilarious, terrifying, and ultimately, even healing."

About Refracted Theatre Company

Refracted's mission is to disrupt socially accepted narratives by telling the "other side of the story." By upending audience expectations through innovation and adaptation, Refracted inspires meaningful discourse centered on empathy and humanity.

Refracted is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that was founded in 2019 in New York City by Graham Miller and Tova Wolff. As a two-year old company, Refracted is proud to have been one of the only theaters in the country that produced two full seasons of live theatre during the pandemic, harnessing its powers of creativity and innovation. Now in its third season in its new home of Chicago, Refracted invites you to get involved as it redefines what theatre can be in order to build a world fueled by curiosity and compassion.




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