‘In the Next Room (or The Vibrator Play)’
FRIDAY 12/2-SUNDAY 12/18. The Weekend Theater. 7:30 p.m. Fri.-Sat.; 2:30 p.m. Sun. $18-$20.

The staging of “In the Next Room (or The Vibrator Play)” is simple, tailor made for a modest venue like The Weekend Theater. Two adjacent rooms in an 1880s Victorian home, a doctor’s office and the neighboring parlor, remain visible to the audience throughout the entirety of the play. While Dr. Givings experiments with a new electrical invention designed to cure hysteria, an early approximation of the vibrator, his wife, Catherine, takes care of their newborn daughter just a wall away, eavesdropping with jealousy and confusion while struggling to breastfeed. As more patients, their spouses, a midwife and a wet nurse enter the house, every possible arrangement of desire, pleasure and partnership is given a chance in the spotlight. An almost-Shakespearean instinct for compulsive coupling abounds. Written by Sarah Ruhl, winner of the 2006 MacArthur Genius Grant, this play was nominated for three Tonys.

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