The premiere of Love + Science at New York City Center Stage II has its cast and creative team. Jonathan Burke (The Inheritance) and Lucille Lortel nominee Matt Walker (The Play That Goes Wrong) will star as two gay medical students loving and living during the 1980s HIV/AIDS crisis in the new work by playwright and scientist David J. Glass. Previews begin May 26 with opening night set for June 4. The run is set through July 6.
Joining Burke and Walker will be ensemble members and Broadway alums Thursday Farrar (Aida), Ryan Knowles (The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical), Tally Sessions ( Anastasia), Imani Pearl Williams (1776), and Netflix film star Adrian Greensmith (Metal Lords).
In New York City, two gay medical students form a connection while working in the same retrovirology lab. But then the HIV/AIDS epidemic erupts and they suddenly find themselves on different paths and their relationship upended. Questions are raised about their values as scientists and doctors and their responsibilities as gay men as they try to love and hope while facing a crisis and the realities of scientific progress.
Helming the production will be director Allen MacLeod, with creative team members including scenic designer Zoë Hurwitz, costume designer Camilla Dely, lighting designer Reza Behjat, original music and sound designer Jane Shaw, and intimacy and movement director Dave Anzuelo.
“The panic at the beginning of the COVID pandemic felt eerily similar to the beginnings of the HIV/AIDS epidemic,” said Glass in a statement. “This led me to return to playwriting after decades working in medical research. Love + Science is my attempt to shed more light on a tumultuous moment in New York history that is being forgotten.”
The play is inspired by Glass’ time at New York Medical College where he took care of HIV patients as a medical student. He also conducted postdoctoral research on cancer at Columbia University in a lab focused on HIV and other emerging infectious diseases.