The consistently excellent cast, with urgent and fearless direction from Jason Gerace, spill secrets and relationships and activities that give this short yet intense play all the gravity and dimension of a script twice its length.
More than 900,000 women suffer from post-partum depression; or between 11 and 20 percent of women who give birth. Behind the statistics are deeply individual stories of chronic sorrow and pain, women whose disease attacks them mentally as well as physically, telling them they are not only sick but also utter failures.
NO MATTER HOW HARD WE TRY is staged exactly where it should be. Wedged behind a tiny door at the end of a dark alleyway, Trap Door Theatre’s space perfectly suits this absurd portrait of drab and depressing life in Poland after World War II. Joanna Iwanicka’s set, a single dull, monochromatic room flanked by electric blue refuse (think Sin City, but five feet away from you) spills ever so slightly into the audience. You’re simultaneously in the room and observing it. A tiny, glowing TV screen sitting downstage center faces the stage, muddling the notion of who is watching whom.