Nashville Repertory Theatre‘s world premiere of Nate Eppler‘s psychological drama Good Monsters runs Feb. 13-27 in Johnson Theater at Tennessee Performing Arts Center with previews Feb. 11-12. This gripping look at the aftermath of very American-style violence is one that shouldn’t be missed.
“The catalyst for this story,” says Eppler, “is a shocking act of violence: an off-duty officer shoots and kills an unarmed teenage girl. But the play starts after that. The play isn’t about the shooting; the play is about the ripples that spread out in all directions from this one violent act. The play is about living in the rubble.”
About the Show
Frank is a Gulf War veteran and police officer who moonlights as a security guard to make ends meet. Safira was a shoplifter. It was dark. Frank thought she had a gun. She didn’t. Now Frank’s the guy who shot an unarmed teenager, with ramifications for his wife, his best friend, Safira’s father, and a media spin doctor looking for a story. While he waits for the grand jury, Safira haunts Frank every night and soon she begins to make terrifying demands of him. psychological drama explores how human beings maneuver through earth-shattering tragedy, with intense focus on the human side of a situation gone horribly wrong. While challenging you to question your own preconceptions of good and bad, whatever they may be, this stirring and emotional play transcends predictable notions on both sides of the political divide, drawing humanity to the forefront.
Eppler created Good Monsters during Nashville Rep’s 2013-14 Ingram New Works Project, and in 2015 the script was workshopped further with input from relevant community members. Participants included a police officer, sociology professor, suicide prevention counselor, lawyer, PTSD counselor, journalist, and current and former armed services veterans with the goal of maintaining authenticity and to gage what impact the play was accomplishing. Prodding a strong empathy response over blame was a high priority.
“The workshop experience on this play was like nothing else I’ve experienced,” explains Eppler. “Inviting so many unique points of view into the room and really letting them talk to each other was both incredibly illuminating and genuinely fulfilling. Without a doubt their voices made the play better.”
Nashville Rep’s cast for Good Monsters includes Megan Murphy Chambers (Josie), Alexandra Huff (Zero), Nathaniel McIntyre (Frank), R. Alex Murray (Dumptruck), Carey Van Driest (Darlene) and Garris Wimmer (Zell). The show is directed by René D. Copeland, Nashville Rep’s Producing Artistic Director. Designers are Gary Hoff (Scenic Designer); Trish Clark (Costume Designer); Darren Levin (Lighting Designer); Ricky Lighthall (Sound Designer); and Colin Peterson (Projections Designer); Technical Director is Tyler Axt; and Fight Coordinator is Eric D. Pasto-Crosby.
Tickets start at $25 for previews and at $45 for regular run performances. They can be purchased online by clicking here or by calling the Box Office at (615) 782-4040.
About The Ingram New Works Project
The Ingram New Works Project was created by Nashville Rep with the support of co-founder Martha R. Ingram to provide an opportunity for theatre artists to develop new theatre works while in residency at Nashville Rep.
Each season, Nashville Rep welcomes four emerging playwrights and one established playwright into its Ingram New Works Project. The emerging playwrights make up the Ingram New Works Lab, directed by Eppler, Nashville Rep’s Playwright-in-Residence. An established, award-winning playwright serves as Nashville Rep’s Fellow for the season. The Fellow joins the Lab playwrights for a Symposium Week in January, helping critique and shape their work, and serving as a mentor for the emerging playwrights. Then, all the playwrights, including the Fellow, present their newly written work at Nashville Rep’s Ingram New Works Festival in May. The Fellow for 2015-16 is Rebecca Gilman.
LookIn for Good Monsters
Tuesday, Feb. 2 is the Look-In for Good Monsters. This event allows audience members to walk into the private world of rehearsal and learn about the creative process of the director, set designer, and costume designer. An excerpt of the play will be performed as it is being shaped in the rehearsal process. Reservations for the Feb. 2 LookIn can be made by clicking here. LookIns are part of TPAC’s InsideOut program. The LookIn performance may contain strong adult language.
Performances of Good Monsters will be held in Andrew Johnson Theater at Tennessee Performing Arts Center which is located at 505 Deaderick St.
Thursday, Feb. 11 6:30 PM
Friday, Feb. 12 7:30 PM
Saturday, Feb. 13 7:30 PM (Opening night)
Tuesday, Feb. 16 6:30 PM
Wednesday, Feb. 17 6:30 PM
Thursday, Feb. 18 6:30 PM
Friday, Feb. 19 7:30 PM **
Saturday, Feb. 20 2:30 PM
Saturday, Feb. 20 7:30 PM *
Tuesday, Feb. 23 6:30 PM
Wednesday, Feb. 24 6:30 PM
Thursday, Feb. 25 6:30 PM
Friday, Feb. 26 7:30 PM **
Saturday, Feb. 27 2:30 PM
Saturday, Feb. 27 7:30 PM *
* Denotes post-show Meet and Greet with the cast
** Denotes post-show Talkback
NOTE: This play contains intense adult language and sexual situations.