WEAPONS Opens Tonight at The Lounge Theatre

Playwright Chris Collins is building a reputation for plays that take a hard, uncompromising look at how people respond to traumatic events that, as he says, "breaks open the skin of a tightly wound family."

He started delving into this issue with his first play in what he considers his "San Francisco Trilogy," Victorian and followed it up with The Song of St. Tess, both of which opened to critical acclaim in Los Angeles. Now, along with FogBank Entertainment, he is proud to present Weapons playing April 9-May 8 at The Lounge Theatre on Historic Theatre Row.

Weapons features Laura, who has asked her uncle Bill, a struggling actor, to come up to San Francisco to check in on the family. Her mother died of cancer almost exactly a year ago, and she's worried how erratically her father, Paul, has been acting since. Shortly after the death of his wife, Paul retired from the police force, although the reasoning is questionable and apparently wasn't entirely his decision. Suddenly Laura's big sister, Sarah, who is still distraught over the loss of her mother, returns, and she won't leave until her father accepts responsibility for the mysterious circumstances surrounding her mother's death.

"The financial, emotional, and erotic pressures are hard-edged in modern America," Collins said. "As I drew the characters, I saw how they fought hard to free themselves from the pre-determined roles of family life, yet could not quite pull it off. Love, with its inevitable cruelty and beauty, tied them all wonderfully together."

What drew director Kiff Scholl to the play was not just the poetic writing, but the nuanced relationships of its four leads.

"This is a universal human story of surviving the loss of a loved one," Scholl said. "But the play doesn't occur in the immediate aftermath of the death of a young wife and mother. Instead, the emotions are bottled up and left to fester and boil in secrets and silence until a full year has passed and the family can't stay silent anymore."

Scholl has directed dozens of L.A. plays over the past two decades, his last being Moon Over Buffalo, which earned him a 2014 Broadway World Award nomination. Other critically acclaimed productions include La Bête, and the world premieres of A Mulholland Christmas Carol, Middle Savage, Act a Lady, and Don Giovanni Tonight, Don Carlo Tomorrow at Sacred Fools and Theatre of NOTE. His shows have also won seven Back Stage Garland awards, five LA Weekly awards, a GLAAD nomination, and an Ovation award. Scholl was listed as "one of LA's emerging and accomplished stage directors" by the LA Weekly. He is also an award-winning filmmaker and writer and professional commercial, TV and film actor.

As for what audiences can expect with Weapons, Scholl said there are definitely some surprises.

"In addition to the play being touching, funny, honest and fearless, it's also rather ominous and a little creepy," he said. "The ghost of their mother has a hold on the house, and the grip is palpable. Audience members can look forward to a shocking family drama that might just make the hair on the back of their neck stand on end."


Call - (323) 960-7721

Online - https://www.plays411.com/weapons

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