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Theatre 502 Approaches 'Failure' Through Collaboration

Theatre 502

A dark comedy that takes place in Chicago in 1928 is the next play in Theatre 502's season.

“Failure: A Love Story” by Philip Dawkins tells the tale of the three Fail sisters in the last year of their lives, and the man who falls in love with all three of them.

The play uses music, dancing and shadows to illustrate the story, which takes place in the Fail family's home and clock shop. Director Gil Reyes described it as a "fable" and said despite the heavy subject matter, it's not just a drama.

“I've been describing the tone as playfully macabre, so it's funny, as much as it can be when you're watching all the characters die,” Reyes said.

To emphasize the collaborative nature of Theatre 502's work, Reyes chose to cast the production's sound designer, lighting designer, assistant director and dramaturg in on-stage roles. They all have performing backgrounds but wouldn't normally be seen doing their work.

Reyes said he chose the Baron's Theatre on West Main Street, which was used for a long-running magic show, to evoke a long-ago time.

“We thought this could be interesting in that space," he said. "Challenging and difficult, but interesting. And especially with the old-time feel that theatre has inherently, transporting back to 1928 is not as difficult.”

“Failure: A Love Story” opens Nov. 6 and runs through Nov. 15. More information can be found here.

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