Marshall Miles Interviews Director Alice Reagan, Shakespeare & Company Presents “HIR” by Taylor Mac, Performances thru Oct 7

Shakespeare & Company presents HIR by Taylor Mac
Performances Run September 13 – October 7

“Every decade is about a community that is being built as a result of being torn apart.“—Taylor Mac.

(Lenox, MA) – Shakespeare & Company presents Obie Award-winning playwright Taylor Mac’s dark comedy HIR, directed by Alice Reagan, and featuring long-time Company veterans John Hadden and Elizabeth Aspenlieder. Performances run in the Elayne P. Bernstein Theatre September 13 – October 7.

The play begins with Isaac, who has returned from the war in Afghanistan, only to discover a household in revolt. The insurgent: his mom. Liberated from an oppressive marriage with a now ailing husband, and 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, we learn that annihilating the past doesn’t always free you from it.

“What I love about this play is that the characters live on the edge where cruelty and love converge,” said Director Alice Reagan. “MacArthur Fellow Taylor Mac has written an outrageous, hilarious play in the rich tradition of black comedies centered on the dysfunctional American nuclear family. HIR examines the conflict between our need for safety and our desire to risk it all to find a better, truer way to live—no matter the collateral damage to those we love. I think audiences will find themselves laughing out of both shock and recognition. We humans can be brutally honest, even hurtful towards each other, in our quest to live fully. Change hurts. However, change is what is necessary if we want to live wide-awake lives. Wrapped inside this verging-on-absurd domestic tragicomedy is a rousing call to life.”

Alice Reagan returns to Shakespeare & Company after 2016’s acclaimed production ofOr, to direct this black comedy starring Elizabeth Aspenlieder (Paige) and John Hadden (Arnold) alongside Jack Doyle (Max) and Adam Huff (Isaac). The production features an all-female design team including Carolyn Mraz (Set Design), Deb Sullivan (Lighting Design), Charlotte Palmer-Lane (Costume Design), Amy Altadonna (Sound Design), and Fran Rubenstein (Stage Manager).

Tickets for HIR are available online at, or by calling Shakespeare & Company’s box office at (413) 637-3353. The Elayne P. Bernstein Theatre is air-conditioned and wheelchair accessible. Shakespeare & Company is located at 70 Kemble St. in Lenox, Massachusetts. HIR is generously sponsored by Claudia Perles.


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