With the world on the brink of climate disaster, it's not unheard of to consider whether or not this planet will last. If not, do we have another option? Mars Lost chronicles the fictional (yet, not entirely unthinkable) mission of sending a select group of individuals to scout out the next best option - and never return to Earth. The script unlocks the greater question at play: when do you fix what's broken, and when do you start anew?
All photos courtesy of James Baker. William Molitor and Stacy Kolafa in Mars Lost.
Lake Country Playhouse hosts the world premiere of local playwright Justin Spanbauer's new work through February 16th, with director Katie Krueger leading the expedition.
The show follows Angela, a seemingly average woman with a passion for the stars. She applies for the mission on a whim, with idealistic visions of leaving behind a history of heartbreak and a faltering marriage. Of course, giving up everything you've ever known is not so simple.
Stacy Kolafa takes on the central role with a delicate mix of vulnerability and manic tendencies. Through the blend, audiences are invited to witness both Angela's well-trained defense mechanisms, as well as her deepest insecurities. She serves as a glimpse into patrons own hearts, asking that you examine what you would be willing to leave behind yourself.
Kolafa plays opposite Timothy Barnes as Angela's husband, Brian. As Brian tempers his own emotions and attempts to hold his home together, Barnes slips in moments of passionate outburst, expertly reeling them back to create a powerful ebb and flow of tension. This adds an element of unpredictability to Angela and Brian's marriage - when will one of them snap?
Barnes doubles as the scenic designer, having placed three simple frames to create a minimalistic implication of different spaces. Lighting designer Chris Meissner then crafts the space to shift between an otherworldly nature and an Earthly reality. The result gives Krueger the right tools to smoothly transition between Spanbauer's many short, vignette-like scenes.
Mars Lost may be centered around an out-of-this-world opportunity, but the story is surprisingly down-to-earth. Amidst an exploration of the galaxy lies a tender exploration of one's self. The new play addresses naked truths of humanity, and that which is neither black nor white in the complexity of coping. Catch this premiere before it takes off!