Electricity is the latest craze in 1880s New York, a wonderful new invention that illuminates homes and lives. Dr. Givings uses electricity as a treatment in his practice, which ministers to women and their hysterical problems — hysterical in this case referring to problems of a gynecological nature. His wife, Catherine, can hear him tending to his patients and wonders just what this new medical device of his does that so soothes the ladies and restores the color to their cheeks. But Dr. Givings will tell her nothing about his work; this is not an age when doctors — or husbands — discuss women's bodies or needs, especially with the women. Sarah Ruhl's In the Next Room or the vibrator play explores the shocking interior lives and desires of women with the playwright's trademark poetic language and sensitivity. The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis presents In the Next Room or the vibrator play Tuesday through Sunday (March 9 through 27) in the Emerson Studio Theatre at the Loretto-Hilton Center (130 Edgar Road; 314-968-4925 or www.repstl.org). Tickets are $44 to $56.
Tuesdays-Sundays. Starts: March 9. Continues through March 27, 2011