Detroit (San Diego REP)

detroit san diego rep

We have all dreamt of what it would be like to have a different job, live in a different neighborhood, even a different country. Detroit (2013 Pulitzer Prize finalist) written by Lisa D’Amour examines the “What if…?” questions that we ask ourselves when feeling stuck and frustrated in our current situations.

For drifters Sharon and Kenny, living in the suburbs, even without any furniture, and being part of a community is a noble idea, so when Mary and Ben invite them over for a barbeque, Sharon is excited, yet nervous since she and Kenny have shady pasts. It’s obvious that they have something to hide, but Mary and Ben ignore the red flags, because they are working through their own martial problems, like Ben’s lack of interest in seeking employment after being laid off. As he makes claims about the Website he’s supposedly creating for his new business, uptight Mary, the sole income provider, copes with too many vodka drinks. Sharon, a drug user herself, is there to comfort Mary during her drunken frenzies, and together they plan a girls’ camping trip.

The guys do some male bonding of their own over a 12-pack of cheap beer, and right when they decide to head over to a strip club, their wives return from their camping trip that went awry. The two couples let loose (more so Mary and Ben) and heat things up with provocative dancing and breaking of patio furniture, as Mary and Ben’s house ends up in flames.

Although a comedy, Detroit is a tense play that required the actors to perform on an energy level that leaves you a bit exasperated with their preposterous ways. The entire cast did a wonderful job with their characters, especially Summer Spiro (Sharon) with her zany antics.