Duncan Macmillan is one of the hottest young playwrights in England. His works have a reputation for being edgy and complex, and for tackling issues we don't often see in theater.
One of his most acclaimed works is "Lungs." It's next up from Sarasota's Urbanite Theatre.
"Lungs" interweaves personal and global themes. Its only two characters, a married couple called M and W, are considering having a child. But given the condition of the world -- climate crisis, terrorist attacks, political upheaval -- the couple frets over the decision, wondering if it's selfish to bring a new life into such a planet. "I could fly to New York and back every day for seven years and still not leave a carbon footprint as big as if I have a child," one of them says. "Ten thousand tons of CO2. That's the weight of the Eiffel Tower. I'd be giving birth to the Eiffel Tower."
It's thematically stark, and Macmillan's own vision of the play was that it would be done without sets or sounds. But critics have also noted that it's engaging and blisteringly funny. It's had successful runs in new York and in England.
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The Urbanite production features Katie Cunningham, an Asolo Repertory Theatre veteran who was great in "Our Betters" and "Both Your Houses," and Urbanite co-artistic director Brendan Ragan, who was in "Reborning" at Urbanite earlier this year.
Urbanite shows have been selling out rapidly, so it's wise to get tickets as soon as possible.
Details: Dec. 4-January 5, Urbanite Theatre, 1487 Second St., Sarasota. Show times: 8 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday. Additional performances 2 p.m. Dec. 5 and 12 and 8 p.m. Dec. 28-29. No performances Dec. 24-2.Tickets: $20; students with ID $5. Information: 941-321-1397, urbanitetheatre.com.
-- Marty Clear