Theatre: Stop Kiss

By Alana Horton

Have you heard about Stop Kiss? It’s the Macalester Theatre Department’s Winter production, and it opens this Friday. The play, written by Diana Son, focuses mainly on the relationship that develops between two young women living in New York: savvy, cynical Callie, and Midwestern idealist, Sara. That relationship is seriously affected by a horrific assault provoked by the couple’s first kiss that leaves Sara seriously damaged, and Callie struggling to make up her mind about her life, identity and love. The play continually flips in time from before to after the accident, providing the audience a unique window in which to understand the lives of the characters. Despite its serious themes of trauma and hate crimes, humor and humanity shine though throughout the play. One notable aspect of Stop Kiss is that it is a recent play, set in the 1990’s, and its dialogue is performed in a naturalistic style. As Rob Gelberg, ’14, who plays the character of George puts it, “This is the first time [at Macalester] that I’m playing a “normal” person, and it’s also the first time in my memory that Macalester has done a play about normal people acting normally saying normal things. But this play is anything but normal. It’s a very powerful, funny, poignant play.” Stop Kiss is part of the Theatre Department’s season theme of “Voices of the Silenced,” which aims to give voice to “displaced persons, the poor, targets of hate crimes, and citizens struggling with trauma – in many instances showing how humor and solidarity are crucial strategies in giving voice and refusing silence.” Gelberg sees Stop Kiss as an important production in relation to this theme, noting “It’s about a homophobic hate crime, and we certainly don’t live in a society where homophobia is a thing of the past. People are still being discriminated against or even hurt and killed for who they are.” Stop Kiss, Rob says, is “funny, and really sad at parts, but it’s the kind of play you’re going to be immediately drawn into. You’ll be drawn by the characters, by the story, by the way these people evolve.” His only qualm? “It’s set in the 90’s, so the only thing that might not translate well is some of the music. But that’s not even true. Ginuwine, TLC… people still listen to 90’s music. mark yo’ Agendas// Friday 17th @7:30 PM February 18th @7.30 PM February 19th @2.00 PM (+ talkback) February 23th @7.30 PM February 24th @7.30 PM February 25th @7.30 Pm $5 for students tix: 651.696.6359 refresh –>