This is a past event.

In the Next Room (or the Vibrator Play) 

When: Sept. 21-Oct. 9 2011
Price: $20-35

According to historical records, a great many modern conveniences did not yet exist in the 1880s. Transistors and integrated circuits. The cheeseburger and the Reuben. The tractor, the zipper and the stop sign. And, of course, the female orgasm.

During playwright Sarah Ruhl's research into the common household device of the title, she discovered that Victorian medicine believed the womb tended to wander through a woman's body. This troublesome condition led to a condition of emotional disquiet that was called "female hysteria." The relatively fortunate ones who got this diagnosis received "pelvic massage," which resulted in what was called "hysterical paroxysm." But since doctors found this massage such a lengthy and tedious chore, a new technology—the electric motor—was soon applied to the problem. The vibrator was born.

In Ruhl's play, a doctor, his patients, his wife and their servants all stand, or recline—cluelessly, for the most part—on the edge of a big discovery. Whatever will they find? Audiences learn when guest Vivienne Benesch directs a cast including Jeffrey Blair Cornell, Kelsey Didion, Julie Fishell and Dee Dee Batteast. The production runs Tuesdays through Sundays through Oct. 9. —Byron Woods

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