What a mesmerizing evening of theater this was, on every count. For starters, how many 22-year-olds write plays as exhilarating and immediate as Lucy Prebble's The Sugar Syndrome
? The story concerns the quirky relationship between Dani, a bulimic teenager straight out of the hospital, and Tim, a middle-aged pedophile straight out of prison. In the lead roles, Magan Wiles and Terry Meddows made for a riveting odd couple: She was a centipede with the shivers; he was stillness personified. They received solid support from Mary Schnitzler as Dani's confused mother and Anthony Winninger as Dani's Internet boyfriend. In mounting the Midwest premiere of a show that apparently none of our larger theaters had any interest in, Erik Little's shoestring Echo Theatre Company validated its relevanceand the relevance of all theaters willing to take risks. If any single play in the past year demanded seeing, it was this authentically raw drama rooted in the here-and-now.