Broken Nose Announces “This Is Only a Test” Cast and Production Team

Broken Nose Announces “This Is Only a Test” Cast and Production Team

(top, l to r) Zhanna Albertini, Trevor Bates and Shane Rhoades (bottom, l to r) Aria Szalai-Raymond, RjW Mays and Austyn Williamson.

Broken Nose Theatre has announced casting for its world premiere of Eric Reyes Loo’s “This Is Only a Test,” directed by Toma Langston.

The cast includes ensemble members RjW Mays and Aria Szalai-Raymond with guest artists Zhanna Albertini, Trevor Bates, Shane Rhoades and Austyn Williamson. Understudies include Tatyana Chante, Liz Coin, Jeremiah Davis, Tim Huggenberger, Toma Lynn Smith and Ben Weiss.

The faculty at Washington High have decided to take “being prepared” to a whole new level: through a series of cutting-edge Active Shooter Drills, their students will be trained on how to fight back, just in case their school is the next to hit the news cycle. But as they’re asked to quell violence by responding violently, four teenagers begin to wonder: if we’re so prepared, why do we feel even more unsafe?

“It’s impossible to deny that school shootings are like an infection that has seeped into the very bones of our nation,” said Artistic Director Elise Marie Davis. “Gone are the days where we ask if it’ll happen again. It has become the devastating and ever-present question of ‘where’ and ‘when.’ When the students at the center of this play are asked to accept fighting back as the best solution to a problem adults have created, they rightly begin to question this new normal, and with sometimes devastating results. ‘This is Only a Test’ is a darkly satirical new play that unflinchingly looks at this epidemic, and at the proposed solution at its core and asks, ‘How did we get here, and why do we believe this is a viable response?'”

The production team includes Jessie Baldinger (scenic design), Satoe Schechner (costume design), Conchita Avitia (lighting design), Steve Labedz (sound design), Devon Green (props design), Chris Smith (fight director), Sarah Scanlon (intimacy director), David Weiss (dramaturg), Ben Locke (assistant director), Rose Hamill (production manager), Liz Gomez (master electrician) and Adriana Rodriguez (stage manager).

“This is Only a Test” will play May 1 – May 30, 2020, at The Den Theatre (2A), 1331 N. Milwaukee Ave. in Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood. Tickets go on sale Monday, March 16 at Tickets for all Broken Nose Theatre productions are available on a “pay-what-you-can” basis.

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