Arts News

SLAC presents Utah premiere of ‘HIR’, a dark comedy about a family in transition

In a press release from Executive Artistic Director Cynthia Fleming of Salt Lake Acting Company is delighted to present the Utah premiere of HIR by Taylor Mac, a sensational dark comedy about a family in transition, playing Feb. 7–March 11.

Somewhere in the suburbs, Isaac has returned from the wars to help take care of his ailing father, only to discover a household in revolt. The insurgent: his mom. Liberated from an oppressive marriage, with Isaac’s newly out transgender sibling as her ally, she’s on a crusade to dismantle the patriarchy. But in Taylor Mac’s sly, subversive comedy, annihilating the past doesn’t always free you from it.

The New York Times hails the show as “sensational — in all senses of the word…[an] audacious and uproarious black comedy” and asserts that “Mac has his own gloriously skewed vision of the toxins fouling the American family from within, and in its avowedly loopy way HIR reflects current concerns about the decline of the middle class, as well as the trauma war veterans endure.”

SLAC is proud to bring this outrageous and utterly timely piece to life with an all-local cast and creative team. Director Tracy Callahan, from Weber State University, leads the ensemble of actors which includes Austin Archer, Liggera Edmonds-Allen, Richard Scott, and Christy Summerhays.

Callahan says, “This present moment in history and in these characters’ lives is about transition. To think of America’s present moment as a transgender character, as someone going through transition and redefining language and understanding feels right. To think of the American family and this American family drama as a reflection of where we may be headed if we don’t open our minds and hearts to the changes and transformations that are filling our homes is, as Paige says in the play, ignoring a great ‘paradigm shift.’ Ultimately HIR is about family salvation and family escape. It is a tragedy wrapped up in Mac’s unique view of the world, full of humor that makes us wonder if we should laugh or cry.”

Throughout the run of HIR, SLAC is proud to partner with the Utah Domestic Violence Coalition and Transgender Education Advocates of Utah. A free panel discussion on the themes of the play is presented on Sunday, March 11, following the 1 p.m. performance and is open to the public.

Feb. 7–March 11
Wednesdays – Saturdays @ 7:30 p.m., Sundays @ 1 p.m. and 6 p.m.
Additional performances:
Tuesday, Feb. 27 and March 6 @ 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, March 10 @ 2 p.m.
Salt Lake Acting Company – Main Theatre
168 W. 500 North, SLC

Single tickets range from $24–43 depending on the performance. Discounts are available for groups of 10 or more, students, seniors, and people 30 years old and younger.

PHOTO: Playwright Taylor Mac

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