Shock Treatment

New play baits the right wing

A boy is locked in a closet. We never learn his name, but as we watch John Caswell Jr.’s Closet.Drama: A Homo/Hetero Collision unfold, we learn a little about him: He is struggling with his sexuality. He’s acquainted with the Reverend Fred Phelps, founder of the Westboro Baptist Church, and Phelps’ warmhearted Web site, godhatesfags.com. His mother has been replaced by a surrogate, who advocates against homosexuality and attempts to turn her “son” into a heterosexual with electroshock therapy.

Closet.Drama’s title refers not only to the content of the play, but to a type of theatrical event intended to be interpreted by a solitary reader, and not performed on a stage. But Caswell’s works are meant to be seen. His Britney Spears for President and Shots: A Love Story have been produced by Scottsdale’s Progressive Theatre Workshop in recent years, and the latter went on to play the New York International Fringe Festival. Caswell’s newest play is sure to draw some attention, perhaps from right-wing protesters.


Thu., Jan. 29, 8 p.m.; Fri., Jan. 30, 8 p.m.; Sat., Jan. 31, 8 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 1, 8 p.m.; Thu., Feb. 5, 8 p.m.; Fri., Feb. 6, 8 p.m.; Sat., Feb. 7, 8 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 8, 8 p.m., 2009
 
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