Two Chicago cops. One dark, rainy night on patrol. One life-altering decision.
Springs Ensemble Theatre presents the gritty, dark, 2007 two-man show, "A Steady Rain," by Keith Huff. It opens Thursday.
Steve Emily and Matt Radcliffe star as Denny and Joey, two cops who have been best friends since kindergarten. It's them, two chairs and a table on stage, as they unravel a 90-minute duologue that explores male friendship, the limitations of the truth and how far one goes to protect himself and the ones he loves.
"It's compelling material," says director David Plambeck. "There are no innocent victims in this show. Both characters have something to say that will either affect you or resonate with you."
Huff based his play on a true Chicago case guaranteed to twist a viewer's gut.
It's a stark production, both in terms of content and staging. It's the most stripped-down set SET has had, Emily says.
It was part of the reason he pitched the script to the company.
"I read it, and it grabbed me," Emily says. "It read like it has the feel of (Martin) Scorsese back in the '70s. It's like an urban nightmare, where the urban setting is another character."
Ultimately, it's a he-said/he-said show, and the audience is bound to take sides. Plambeck hopes that struggle makes the show stick to the viewer's ribs long after the final bow.
"I'm hoping the audience has plenty to talk about afterward," Plambeck says.
How does the cast deal with spending night after night traveling into shadowy psychic space?
"Unfortunately, life itself is a dark thing," Radcliffe says. "That's part of what's great about this script. It doesn't shy away from things we'd rather not think or talk about or experience in our lives. I see it as a part of life. There's good and there's bad, and we have to remember the bad things so we know how good the good things are."
"A Steady Rain"
Who: Springs Ensemble Theatre
Cast: Steve Emily, Matt Radcliffe
Director: David Plambeck
Running time: 90 minutes, no intermission
When: Opens Thursday, 7:30 p.m. Thursdays-Saturdays, 4 p.m. Oct. 20 and 27, runs through Oct. 27
Where: Springs Ensemble Theatre, 1903 E. Cache La Poudre St.
Tickets: $15, $10 student rush tickets available five minutes before the show; 357-3080, springs ensembletheatre.org
Contact Jennifer Mulson at 636-0270.