“A Bright New Boise” at Big Idea Theatre

One of my favorite things about Big Idea Theatre is that their production values are always top-notch. Excellent actors, beautiful sets, good lighting and sound. This leaves the audience the opportunity to really focus on the content of the work being presented.

This is very much the case with A Bright New Boise, which plays through  July 16. I’m still thinking about the arguments and implications of the play, days after seeing it, and mulling over the literary merit of this dark comedy.

I can’t spill too much about the show, but there were moments when audience members gasped in surprise, howled with laughter, and sat in that awkward silence where you’re not sure if the situation in front of us was horribly funny – or if we’re maybe horrible people for thinking so.

After leaving his rural hometown, Will, a new recruit at a Boise Hobby Lobby, seeks connection to a life he gave away years ago or the Rapture – whichever comes first. The dreary staff break room serves as a confessional for a motley congregation of very different souls searching for meaning, order, connection and atonement.

The show is beautifully directed by Benjamin T. Ismail and Kevin Adamski, assisted by Zachary Scovel. The show stars Jouni Kirjola as Will and Kyle Burrow as Alex. I can’t imagine better actors for either of these roles. Kirjola, in particular, is a dynamic force in the show. Alexa Slater, Torin Lusebrink, and Jamie Kale round out the cast, and add wonderful dimension to the story.

Definitely put this one on your “go see” list.

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