End Days, Deborah Zoe Laufner' 2008 play about sixteen-year-old goth girl Rachel Stein' post 9/11 experience, is difficult to summarize. There are none of the usual characters from the 9/11 experience -- firefighters, police officers, heartbroken widows, or brave wreckage-sifting volunteers. There is, however, the (also sixteen-year-old) boy next door turned Elvis impersonator, Nelson Steinberg, who is crushing hard for Rachel. There are Rachel's saddened and isolated parents, each immersed in their own respective new reality. Her mother, Sylvia, is in her early forties and has broken with her Jewish faith and become a born-again Christian. Rachel's father, Arthur, is devastatingly depressed and the day is always the same for him -- he's a couch-ridden, pajama-clad kind of fog. Oh, also, the Apocalypse is coming, and only the all-mighty duo of Jesus Christ and Stephan Hawking can save the day. Laufner's talent for the unusual shines through her writing, however, turning these bizarre circumstances into a funny, working punch line. The New Jewish Theatre invites you to experience the End Days. The play is performed at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, 8 p.m. Saturday and 2 and 7:30 p.m. Sunday (September 8 through 25) in the Wool Studio Theatre at the Jewish Community Center (2 Millstone Campus Drive, Creve Coeur; 314-432-5700 or www.newjewishtheatre.org). Tickets are $35.50 to $39.50.
Wednesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, Sundays. Starts: Sept. 8. Continues through Sept. 25, 2011