New Jewish Theatre closes season with ‘Life Sucks’

The cast of ‘Life Sucks,’ coming to the NJT stage May 23 to June 10.

As its closing show of the 2017-2018 season, the New Jewish Theatre will present “Life Sucks,” Aaron Posner’s reworking of the Anton Chekhov play “Uncle Vanya.” 

Whereas the original Chekhov tale can be downright depressing, Posner’s brash and revelatory adaptation is irreverent, quirky and endearing. Yet it is also faithful to its source.  

The production, directed by incoming Artistic Director Edward Coffield, will be at the NJT from May 23 to June 10. 

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Posner brings a playful, clever originality to the story  about love, loss and longing, with a healthy dose of Jewish philosophizing thrown in.The play centers on a group of yearning, frustrated, heartbroken, questioning, and in many ways privileged souls. All of these characters — a group of old friends, ex-lovers, estranged in-laws and lifelong enemies — have gathered to grapple with life’s thorniest questions, and each other. 

What results are entertaining riffs on topics including work-life balance; the fate of the environment; why we love to hate gyms; academic pretension; depression; growing old; how families are both impossible and indispensable; and the effort to balance morality and desire. 

The production features Jeff Cummings, Michelle Hand, Christopher Harris, Katie Keating, Greg Johnston, Julie Layton and Jan Meyer.  

The play is presented in the Jewish Community Center’s Wool Studio Theatre, 2 Millstone Campus Drive.  

Tickets are $36 for preview performance, $39 to $44 for all other performances; available online at newjewishtheatre.org or 314-442-3283.