Deer and the Lovers
by Emily Zemba (World premiere: Carlotta Festival of New Plays)
Yale School of Drama Iseman Theater May 8 – 15 2015
Director: Sara Holdren. Sets: Izmir Ickbal. Lighting: Elizabeth Mak.
Projections: Davonte Johnson. Sound: Tyler Kieffer. Costumes: Sydney Gallas.
Photography: T. Charles Erickson.
The world of Deer and the Lovers is at once funny, quirky, and sometimes downright weird. A deer has inexplicably smashed its way into Qiana's New Hampshire home, where she and her boyfriend Peter have planned a romantic getaway at. Trouble shows up in the form of Peter's combative sister, Marnie, and her husband, Felix, the latter of whom also happens to be sleeping with Qiana.
Animal control officer (ex-rapist?) Lenny Brensky refuses to remove the deer from the premises, and a heartily confused Qiana who identifies way too much with the plight of the dead deer runs off into the forest a la Midsummer Night's Dream to bury it. In this magical mystical forest, with the aid of Puck-like Lenny, our characters get lost, find each other, and confront the realities about themselves that they'd been trying so hard to hide before.
My job? I was tasked with creating this nighttime forest landscape within an alley seating grey box. If a tree falls in the forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound? That's the world we're in.