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PTC’s ‘The Anatomy of Love’ reading tackles transgender youth issues

Pioneer Theatre Company begins its eighth season of the Play-by-Play New Play Reading Series this Friday and Saturday with a reading of The Anatomy of Love, a play in development by New York-based playwright Ted Malawer.

The Anatomy of Love starts with the typical modern couple: Laura is a dedicated, hard-working lawyer while Danny, an underemployed actor, is a stay-at-home dad. Their marriage has shifted into auto-pilot as both of them strive for the American dream.

But all of that is brought to a frightening dead stop when their seven-year-old daughter’s teacher suggests that the child is most likely transgender. What follows is a fierce and sometimes hostile battle between Danny and Ms. Spencer advocating acceptance and pre-emptive reassignment, and Laura adamantly refusing either action.

This timely, contemporary issue is the battleground for an emotional and heartbreaking story of love and loss.

Playwright Ted Malawer

“When I read this play last summer, I loved it, and knew I wanted to bring it into our new play reading series,” said Pioneer Theatre Company Artistic Director Karen Azenberg, who will also direct this reading. “The conversation it opens is one that families all over the country, openly or reluctantly, are having, as we embrace a new future that doesn’t see gender as binary, as we always have.”

“I’m thrilled to continue the development of  The Anatomy of Love at PTC,” says playwright Ted Malawer. “The theatre is a place for us to all come together, no matter our differences, and synchronize our heartbeats. I’m excited and honored that Karen has embraced this play and chosen it to open the new Play-by-Play season.”

New York City-based actor Andrea Morales will read as Ms. Spencer. Utah-based actor Jason Michael Spelbring will read as Danny Bradford. Salt Lake City-based actor Cassandra Stokes-Wyllie will read as Laura Bradford.

The readings will take place at the Dumke Auditorium of the Utah Museum of Fine Arts, 410 Campus Center Dr, Salt Lake City, on Friday, February 7 at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday, February 8 at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. There will be a talkback directly after the 2 p.m. matinee. Tickets are only $10 at

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