Alleyway’s newest production, BURST is a no-holds-barred tour-de-force that looks deep at corporate ambition and ethics through the lens of its three female characters, a CEO, a scientist, and a young journalist. During the 90 minutes of non-stop action, the audience is witness to an unraveling that could occur in any number of executive suites at Fortune 500 companies around the world:
BURST follows Sarah, an extraordinary human being on the verge of saving the planet from her cushy office in Silicon Valley. At the helm of one of the fastest growing tech companies in history—a company she built herself from scratch—she is about to announce a major breakthrough that will make her richer, famous-er, and prove that she was right all along: biodegradable plastic. Oh, and tonight she also has to prep for tomorrow’s lawsuit, soothe her frustrated business partner, and fend off an eager journalist hungry for a scoop. It’s all in a night’s work on the climb to success.
During a preview of the play that included a post-show conversation with the play’s writer Rachel Bublitz and director, Daniel Lendzian, several audience members raved about how incredible it was to see such strong female character development in each role. Others sang praise for the timely topics and the incredible set design.
The conversation was lively and engaging. When it threatened to go well past the allotted time, the audience, playwright, director, and technical crew kindly continued the conversation in the lobby. Chris Handley, Executive/Artistic Director of Alleyway Theatre explained how unique these opportunities are,
“Our talkbacks are different because we produce plays written by real living playwrights, we are bringing them together with the audience for a conversation. These ‘playwright chats’ are some of our most popular events.”
It was truly a special moment to experience this directly after watching a brand-new work of theatre.
Rachel Bublitz started writing BURST when she lived in the Bay area at a time that was greatly influenced by start-ups and tech companies. After observing an all too familiar commonality in her surroundings, along with seeing an office play that only featured one female role, the idea for this play was conceived.
In addition, the set design for Alleyway’s production of BURST was a thoughtful collaboration between set designer, Collin Ranney, and director, Daniel Lendzian, who wanted the external threat of plastic to be represented in the design of the set.
“I didn’t want any reason for anyone to say this isn’t real- I wanted an ever-present reminder that what she (Sarah) is talking about and what she is fighting for is real and does not go away,” shared Lendzian.
The show is unexpectedly funny and incredibly poignant, as well as a lesson in endurance by three of our region’s most formidable actors. So much so, that several audience members audibly gasped and were awed at several points throughout the performance.
With BURST as a 2022 National New Play Network Showcase Finalist, and Alleyway’s excellence in producing world premieres this is an absolute must-see production.
BURST runs from October 26th through November 12th, and tickets are on sale now at Alleyway.com