Sam Max's Coop to Have World Premiere at Off-Off-Broadway's Paradise Factory

Off-Broadway News   Sam Max's Coop to Have World Premiere at Off-Off-Broadway's Paradise Factory
 
The new play explores the cost of freedom and the vulnerable experience of being queer and gender non-conforming.
Lio Mehiel and Briana Archer in a promotional image for <i>Coop</i>
Lio Mehiel and Briana Archer in a promotional image for Coop

A world premiere from playwright Sam Max will move into Off-Off-Broadway's Paradise Factory Theatre this month. Developed as a part of Pipeline Theatre Company’s PlayLab, Coop interrogates the cost of freedom while shining a light on the vulnerable experience of being queer and gender non-conforming.

Coop, which is also directed by Max, will play a limited run February 24–March 14.

The dark comedy follows Avery, raised on her family’s isolated farm compound and desperate to cut ties with her difficult parents. But her uncle’s corpse won’t leave her alone, and the days have started blending together. When she befriends a moonshine delivery boy through a crack in the fence and employs him to kill her parents, we enter a constellation of bloody desserts and missing teeth.

“I wrote this play in response to my time volunteering on a Catholic farm in Appalachia, where there were no clocks and our technology had to be locked away during our stay there,” says Max. “I wanted to layer that experience of a cult-like farm into my personal experience of feeling vulnerable as a queer and gender non-conforming person.”

Coop is produced by Brittany Coyne and Lio Mehiel. The cast is made up of Mehiel as Avery, Don Meehan as Father, Elizabeth Kenny as Mother, Sam Breslin Wright as Uncle, Briana Archer as Sheila, and Mateo Correa as Delivery Boy.

The production features set design by Emona Stoykova, lighting design by Krista Smith, sound design by Michael Costagliola, and costume design by Ivy Karlsgodt. Mia Hull is the show's associate director and dramaturg.

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