BWW Interview: Cast and Director of Utah Repertory Theater Company's STRAIGHT

BWW Interview: Cast and Director of Utah Repertory Theater Company's STRAIGHT

Utah Repertory Theater Company's regional premiere of the recent off-Broadway hit STRAIGHT plays at the Sorensen Unity Center Black Box Theater from March 9 to 25, 2018. To buy tickets and for more information, visit

Meet Ben. Ben is a 26-year-old investment banker. Ben likes beer, sports, and Emily. And Chris. STRAIGHT is a provocative new play that deals with fidelity, sexuality, and identity in "post-equality" America. Funny, sad, sexy, and surprising, this three-character drama takes a hard look at the moral complex of a generation that prides itself on the pretense of acceptance.

The production's cast and director are passionate about the piece and its relevance to local audiences.

"So many people would benefit from seeing this show," said Dallon D. Thorup, who plays Chris. "It deals with a lot of important and uncomfortable issues that everyone in any community can relate to. We may be telling one story as a whole, but there are three very distinct stories here. No, one person is going to leave with the same experience seeing this show, and that's why I love this."

"I like that the play challenges stereotypes and expectations when it comes to relationships of all kinds-those that are new, old, or different," said Andrea Peterson, who plays Emily. "I think as humans and as society, we try and place labels on things, especially on people-who they are and who they should be-and we miss the fact that we are all unique and want and need different things. But then in knowing that, being able to not judge what someone finds important and the pursuit of their life."

"This play explores many themes relevant to today's society, including the fluidity of sexuality, the intersection between desire and morality, and even the nature of happiness," said John Valdez, who plays Ben. "However, at its core STRAIGHT is essentially a play about choosing a life partner. After coming away from the show, I hope the audience will engage in discussions about whether or not our main character made the choice they believe is right, which can then, hopefully, be used as a mirror into how they themselves make similar choices in their own lives."

"I try to look for the kernel of truth that everyone can relate to," said director JC Carter. "We call it the 'universal appeal.' We may not have had the direct experiences that Ben, Emily and Chris have in the play, but we can understand not wanting to be labeled for one aspect of our lives in a way that wipes out all of the other things that make us unique, and we can understand that love can drag us places we didn't expect to go."

Photo Credit: L-R Dallon D. Thorup (Chris), John Valdez (Ben), and Andrea Peterson (Emily). Photo by Blake Yelavich.

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From This Author Tyler Hinton

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