The bleak intimacies of Bronx bar patrons

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Two people on one black box stage surrounded by a relatively small audience: It’s one of the most voyeuristic and intimate settings for a play, and quite possibly the perfect setting for The Egyptian Theatre Company’s performance of John Patrick Shanley’s intensely passionate Danny and the Deep Blue Sea.

“The style of the play is a very intimate look into the lives of the two characters,” said Amber Hansen, a producer who also plays Roberta. “It doesn’t really work as well on a big stage. The 60-seat black box theater brings the audience up close and personal with Danny and Roberta. It should be an intimate experience.”

The play comes from the same mind that wrote Moonstruck and Doubt, and focuses on the raw, emotional and complex interactions between the two misfit main characters. Roberta is a divorced young mother whose teenage son is being cared for by her parents and Danny is a truck driver with serious anger issues. Both come together at a bar in the Bronx, and gradually, through their sexually charged night spent together, try to find hope for their own presently bleak existences.

“The audience will be on the edge of their seats from beginning to end,” Hansen said. “They may feel uncomfortable, but the characters are in very uncomfortable situations as well. There is an element of danger throughout the play and the audience should feel that too. It is certainly a look at some of the lowest elements of humanity, but if we are honest with ourselves, we may not be far from them.”

Danny and the Deep Blue Sea is not like the other family-friendly musical performances The Egyptian presents. This is the first time the play has been performed in Utah, and it has been restricted to a mature audience.

“I think a lot of people will be disgusted with the material if they do not know what to expect,” Hansen said. “We have made it clear that this show is for mature audiences, sexually explicit and brutally raw.”

The smaller and more intimate audience does nothing to deter the high energy and chemistry between these two imperfect lovers.

“We want them to go away feeling like they need a hot shower, then wake up the next day and say ‘Wow, that show was really good’.”

Where: The Egyptian Theatre Studios at the Galleries,
345 Main St., Park City.
When: Nov. 5- 14, Thurs. through Sat. at 7:30 p.m.
and Sun. at 5:30 p.m.
Price: $10 in advance; adults only.
More info: Visit
or call 435-649-9371.

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