Quote of the Day: What is Integrity? That’s the question posed at the beginning of the show, Is Edward Snowden Single? streaming now through December 20, 2020 through The Jungle Theater in Minneapolis, MN.
This show is billed as a comedy, of sorts, but it has much more depth to it than I expected. By the end, I felt it was more of a drama, posing many moral questions and bringing up difficult topics of self-esteem, relationships, loyalty, and self-preservation. A pair of Millennials, April and Mimi, tell their stories in a creative and innovative way. We quickly connect to them and the various characters that they portray. The acting is superb. It seemed like this show was tailor made for the performers Becca Hart and Isabella Star LaBlanc. They portrayed their characters of Mimi and April so well and seamlessly changed voices, accents, and characterization for other characters in this story. Eric Sharp does the voice over for the animated Edward Snowden, who acts as a conscience and sounding board for Mimi.
Playwright Kate Cortesi started writing this play before the pandemic, but it feels like it was written for the streaming format. The actors are in different locations. Much of the scenery is done through green screen, animation, and very clever use of the format. The entire production team brought this script to life in an amazing way: Sound Design by Sean Healey, Video Design and editing by Kathy Maxwell, Illustrations by Becca Hart and Animation by Sara Richardson. Interim Artistic Director at the Jungle Theater, Christina Baldwin directed this incredible production. I can’t even imagine how complex it is to put this type of show together. All the people involved are in various locations, in charge of different aspects of the show, and it magically comes together in this seamless and innovative production!
While the characters are funny and have many humorous scenes together, they also have deeper issues. As the story unfolds you wonder if it was all inside Mimi’s head and what is truth and what is she still trying to cover up. It asks questions of integrity. It would be a good show to watch with a group of young adults in an ethics class. I’d watch it with older teens, as well, with the warning of adult language and themes. (There were a few words and phrases that crossed the line for me. Well placed R-rated language can pack a punch. Too much distracts from the story.) I know I would have had a few cringey, uncomfortable, moments if I had been watching this play with my sons, but I think it would bring up some good discussion.
Overall, this is an engaging story, so well done. I continue to be impressed with how adaptable artists have been in doing what they love and connecting with audiences through this pandemic. Check out Is Edward Snowden Single? streaming at the Jungle Theater through Dec. 20, 2020, along with their other audio offerings.
Go. Create. Inspire!
Journaling Prompt: When has your moral compass been challenged by the actions of others, or your own choices? Can you define integrity?