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The aliens land at S.t Paul’s Church

By Henry Vermillion

The San Miguel Playreaders will feature a production of the young playwright Annie Baker’s acclaimed piece The Aliens Wednesday and Thursday October 2 and 3.

The Aliens
Wed and Thu, Oct 2 & 3, 7pm
St. Paul’s Church
Cardo 6
20 Pesos

When the play first appeared in New York in 2010, the New York Times called it “A gentle and extraordinarily beautiful new play”, “distinctly Chekhovian”, and “this season’s cult hit”. When I first read an article recently in “The New Yorker” praising Annie Baker’s work, I was put off by her interest in the slacker/mumble core/drop-outs with whom she seems to populate her plays. But when I read a copy of “The Aliens” loaned to me by a friend, my mind was changed by the work. It is Chekhovian. It is subtle, funny, and empathetic and it is well worthwhile to produce and to see.

It’s a one-set play: all the (very minimal) action takes place in the unpromising back patio of a Vermont coffeehouse. The three characters are KJ and Jasper, friends who have dropped out of the rat race—Jasper is trying to write a novel—and 17 year old Evan. Evan is a very straight innocent who works at the coffeehouse. He’s looking forward being a counselor at a kids’ music camp. KJ and Jasper had a band, but it broke up because none of them could agree on the name of the group. KJ, though, is still full of songs he wrote for the disbanded band.

The actors are Lee Harris, Mick Diener, and Josh Acatzin Basman. Sound and lights are by Dic Simandl, and Henry Vermillion directs. The door opens at 7pm, and admission is just 20 pesos.

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