Family Is Torn by Moral Questions in Premiere of Genetics Drama, Reinventing Eden

News   Family Is Torn by Moral Questions in Premiere of Genetics Drama, Reinventing Eden
Reinventing Eden, Seth Rozin's drama about an eminent scientist who is allegedly conducting genetic experiments on his own son, opens April 12 in a world premiere production by InterAct Theatre Company in Philadelphia.

Previews began April 7, with performances continuing to May 7.

Reinventing Eden "follows the family of an eminent geneticist, Jonas Tuttle, who is being honored with a major science prize while simultaneously being investigated for allegedly unauthorized experiments he conducted some twenty years earlier," according to InterAct. "Jonas' older son, Paul, has a genetically based mental disability and lives at home at the age of 26. Jonas' younger son, Jason, is a normal, healthy college graduate returning from Peace Core work in East Africa to see his father honored. As the government's investigation begin to expose the secrets of Jonas' top secret experiments, Jonas and his wife, Lizzie, are forced to tell their sons that the allegations are true. Jason's healthy mental state is, indeed, a result of Jonas' intervention. As the future of Jonas' career rests in the outcome of the investigation, the entire Tuttle family must come to terms with the implications of their life-altering decision."

Seth Rozin is the Barrymore Award-winning producing artistic director of InterAct Theatre Company, which is devoted to contemporary (and often issue-oriented) plays. His previous two plays, Men of Stone (produced by Theater Catalyst) and Missing Link (produced by InterAct), garnered Barrymore Award nominations for Outstanding New Play in 2001 and 2002, respectively.

Harriet Power is the production's director and dramaturg.

Her cast includes Tim Moyer (as Jonas Tuttle), Nancy Boykin (as Lizzie Tuttle), Matt Pfeiffer (as Paul Tuttle) and Ahren Potratz (as Jason Tuttle). Also featured will be John Morrison (as Boris), Seth Reichgott (as Robert) and Kevin Bergen (as Corey). The production features sets by Daniel Boylen, lighting by Jerry Forsyth, costumes by Cloe Fox Wind and sound by Kevin Francis.

In a recent interview with InterAct dramaturg Larry Loebell, playwright Seth Rozin said: "I am fascinated by how people come to believe what they believe and what would directly challenge, or topple those beliefs. Manipulating our genes seems to be a line that most people simply don't want to cross. The underlying fear, I think, is the slippery slope. Hardly anyone would object to using a new technology to eradicate a debilitating disease in a child. In fact, there is a moral imperative to do anything we can to relieve that suffering. How are we going to negotiate that line? I wanted to put a face to this issue. I wanted to show a family — in this case, the first family — who crosses that forbidden line."

Performances take place at The Adrienne, 2030 Sansom Street, Philadelphia.

For more information, call (215) 568-8079 or visit

From Left: Tim Moyer, Ahren Potratz and Matt Pfeiffer in <i>Reinventing Eden</i>.
From Left: Tim Moyer, Ahren Potratz and Matt Pfeiffer in Reinventing Eden. Photo by Seth Rozin
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