John J. Caswell, Jr. (Man Cave)'s Wet Brain opens its world premiere June 6 at Off-Broadway's Playwrights Horizons. The new American family drama puts a twist on the classic genre with dark humor and alien abductions. Playwrights Horizons and MCC Theater present Wet Brain, which began previews at the former May 19 for a run through June 25.
Wet Brain follows an Arizonan family as they deal with their father's end-stage alcoholism. But, the play takes unexpected turns in its exploration of the permeating effects of addiction. As the father is repeatedly abducted by aliens, the family must travel into outer space. Can they sort through their depths of loss and find closure lightyears away from Earth?
Starring are Frankie J. Alvarez (Looking, to the yellow house) as Ron, Ceci Fernández (Men on Boats, Tiny Beautiful Things) as Angelina, Florencia Lozano (Placebo; Rinse, Repeat) as Mona, Julio Monge (Oedipus El Rey, On Your Feet!) as Joe, and Arturo Luis Soria (Ni Mi Madre, The Inheritance) as Ricky.
Dustin Wills (Wolf Play) directs Caswell, Jr.'s semi-autobiographical play which features scenic design by Kate Noll, costume design by Haydee Zelideth Antuñano, lighting design by Cha See, sound design by Tei Blow and John Gasper, and projections design by Nick Hussong. Kasson Marraquin serves as stage manager.
Discussing the collaboration between himself and the design team, Caswell, Jr. said in a statement, “We had a really open dialogue where script and technical elements were informing one another... We realized we wanted to pull away from any campier genre elements and into a realism interjected by moments of fantastical departure, and to play with the notion that what goes unseen is often scariest.”