Oh damn! The end of the world is coming again. Christ almighty! Is there no refuge? Answer: check out Samuel Brett Williams’ play Revelation called a “pitch black comedy” by Shelterbelt Theatre. In this four-actor, 16-character play the potential saving grace can be found in Bible-Belt Arkansas. A New York guy and his gal head there for safety and solace. Maybe even resurrection.
Williams dives into this territory hoping to focus on character, faith, love and the American way under maximum stress. Perhaps amid the howls of laughter and pain, observations about how we all deal with our fellow humans may come to the fore, mingled with peering into a cloudy future after life. Questioning the nature of heaven and its flaming alternative.
“More than just a collection of funny scenes, the observation that how we treat each other in the here and now is just as important as any faith in an afterlife,” said Hollywood’s LAist.
Williams hopes that it’ll be as fun as hell. Re Arkansas: he points out that he hails from there and doesn’t intend to “piss on it”; he contends that it has some virtues. However, he did get some of his notions of fire and brimstone from his upbringing, so he might bring that up in some questioning way.
His comedies do intend to be on the darker side. His first biggie, Woodpecker, dealt with torture at Guantanamo Bay. What a scream! He’s also responsible for Derby Day at the Clurman Theatre on N.Y. C.’s Theatre Row and for Revival from 2010, nominated for seven New York Innovative Theatre Awards and optioned for film with him as screenwriter. He teaches screenwriting these days at UNO. Natch.
Hang on; the End of Days could be a riot.
Revelation is Oct. 6-30, Shelterbelt Theatre, 3225 California St. Thurs-Sat: 8 p.m. Sun: 6 p.m. except 10/30 at 2 p.m.: $12-$20. www.shelterbelt.org