Chicago's Victory Gardens Theatre will present the world premiere of Carla Seaquist's The Washington-Sarajevo Talks - A Play For The Next Millennium, opening Nov. 24 and running through Dec. 15.
The play is based on Seaquist's own experience as an American writer "living the nice life" in Washington DC. She communicates by phone with Bosnian historian and radio journalist, Vlado Azinovic, and grows angry at the world for ignoring the genocide occuring in his home country. Meanwhile, Azinovic endures real danger in keeping Radio Zid, Bosnia's cultural station, on the air. When Azinovic is forced to underground, he finally gets to meet Seaquist in person, in Prague. (Seaquist credits Azinovic, now on Radio Free Europe in Prague, with collaborating on the play.)
Victory Gardens associate artistic director Sandy Shinner directs the drama, which stars deanna Dunagan as Seaquist and Raul Esparza as Azinovic. Dunagan has appeared in several Victory Gardens mainstage productions, as well as Steppenwolf's recent Slaughterhouse Five. Esparza, also in Five, has acted at such Chicago institutions as the Goodman, National Jewish Theatre and Remains Ensemble. Premieres directed by Shinner include Jeffrey Sweet's With And Without, Gloria Bond Clunie's North Star and Claudia Allen's Hannah Free, all at Victory Gardens.
Designers for The Washington-Sarajevo Talks are Beth McGeehan (set), Alexandra Sargent (costumes) and Andrew Meyers (lighting).
Previews for the show began Nov. 21 and run to Nov. 23, each evening offering a post-show discussion with Seaquist. For tickets ($15) and information on the play, call (773) 871-3000. -- By David Lefkowitz