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Eleanor is a student at Princeton majoring in biology. When she brings her boyfriend, Rob, home to meet her two moms, Nadine and Allison, she drops a bomb that leaves the once-happy family in disarray. Inspired by the power she perceives in genetics, she has hired a private detective to locate her biological father, a person she has never known and never known anything about. While Nadine understands Eleanor’s urge to know her dad, Allison, her biological mother, is less sanguine about the quest.
This short synopsis only begins to uncover the depths that will be explored in Carey Crim’s play Never, Not Once, which opens Saturday, February 8, at the Rubicon Theatre. Katharine Farmer, the splendid young director responsible for the award-winning Nibroc Trilogy and Rubicon’s production of South Pacific, helms this nuanced and poignant drama that asks the perpetually relevant question, “Just how important is family to who we are?” The cast of five is made up entirely of newcomers to the Rubicon stage, and the show promises to be one of the season’s highlights.
Playwright Crim also wrote Conviction, a prescient drama about the impact of a sexual-harassment accusation on the lives of a teacher and his family, which was produced to broad acclaim at Rubicon in the fall of 2014. With Never, Not Once, Crim resumes her sounding of the dark gaps that exist even within even the closest of relationships. What kind of privacy is a mother entitled to when what her daughter wants is to know her father? Expect surprises and catharsis from this 90-minute drama.
Never, Not Once previews February 5-7 and shows through February 23 at the Rubicon Theatre (1006 E. Main St., Ventura). See rubicontheatre.org or call (805) 667-2900.