Vagabond Players' comedy explores the darkness under the suburban surface

The Vagabond Players are sinking their teeth into a dark comedy in April.

The theatre company is presenting Detroit, by Lisa D’Amour, onstage at the Bernie Legge Theatre in Queen’s Park from April 6 to 27.

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The play is set in a suburb outside a city that might be Detroit, where suburban couple Ben and Mary see signs of life at the deserted house next door and invite their new neighbours, Sharon and Kenny, over for a barbecue.

As the action unfolds, we learn that Sharon and Kenny met at rehab, that they’re both unemployed and that they don’t own a stick of furniture. But Ben and Mary’s nice white house and backyard filled with the accoutrements of the good life conceal a different story: Ben has lost his job as a loan officer and is starting a new job, ironically with a website that helps people in debt. Mary works as a paralegal but doesn’t earn enough to pay the bills.

“With so much distress simmering under the surface, the quintessential American backyard party turns into something more dangerous – and full of potential,” says a press release.

Natalie Schreiber and Kurtis Maguire star as Mary and Ben, with Ashley Chodat and Alex Ross as Sharon and Kenny. Warren Johnson returns to the Vagabond stage after many years with an appearance as Uncle Frank. The production is directed by Jeremy Heynen.

Audiences are cautioned that Detroit includes course language, heavy alcohol use, drug references and mature themes.

Tickets are $17, or $15 for seniors and youth, with $12 previews on April 4 and 5. See or call 604-521-0412.

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