University Theatre: “Distracted”
- Wednesday, Dec. 9, 2009, 7:30 p.m.
- Inge Theatre, 1530 Naismith Drive in Murphy Hall, KU campus, Lawrence
- Cost: $10 - $15
- Age limit: All ages
Check out our full preview of the production.
From the promoters: “Distracted” premiered in March 2007 at the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles, starring Rita Wilson. A New York City production, staged in spring 2009, off-Broadway by the Roundabout Theatre Company, starred Cynthia Nixon.
A fast-paced comedy about life in the digital age, “Distracted” is the story of a mother and her easily distracted, readily riled son, recently diagnosed with attention deficit disorder. The play questions whether the diagnosis is correct or if the boy is simply overstimulated by TV, computers, cell phones and video games — just like his parents, the neurotic neighbors, his clueless doctors and everyone else living in the revved-up, whacked-out webcast of modern life.
The boy doesn’t pay attention in school or get along with the other kids, so neighbor ladies recommend the latest drugs, doctors and treatments they’ve tried on their kids or heard about at the PTA, List said. While the mother consults with doctors, the boy’s teacher and other characters, all with different recommendations, the boy’s father is resistant to drugs and medical intervention.
“He just wants his kid to be normal but not at the expense of turning him into a nice quiet vegetable who watches the Weather Channel for days on end,” List said. “While Mama is inclined to let her boy be, the sudden appearance of the kid brings the theorizing in the play down to earth.”
Jeff List, a doctoral student from Bowling Green, Ohio, is directing the production. Delores Ringer, associate professor of theatre, is scenic designer; Gema Resendiz, a junior from Waukegan, Ill., is lighting designer; Brena Bessa, a senior from Manus, Brazil, is costume designer; and J.T. Nagle, a junior from Osawatomie, is sound designer.
General admission tickets for “Distracted” are on sale in the KU ticket offices: University Theatre, 864-3982, and Lied Center, 864-ARTS, and online at kutheatre.com. Tickets are $15 for the public, $10 for students and $14 for senior citizens and KU faculty and staff. All major credit cards are accepted for phone and online orders.