The Warehouse Theatre this week presents “The How and the Why,” a contemporary play about two biologists who share more than a mutual interest in reproductive science.
The play centers on the relationship between an up-and-coming graduate student, Rachel Hardeman, and a senior faculty member Zelda Kahn, who are both exploring why humans are the only species to experience menstrual cycles and menopause. Both have very different explanations, but as the relationship grows questions become more personal.
“This show is a good fit for Stephens not only because they are two very independent and strong female characters but because it deals with issues that women face every day,” said Senior Emma Delfosse, who is directing the play. “Zelda, played by Kate Thurn, makes a difficult decision to give up her child because she was not ready to have a child, not because she wanted to be successful in her career. The show addresses how much harder women have to work in the sciences and math to achieve the recognition that they deserve.”
To better understand the scientific jargon in the script, Delfosse consulted her mother, Mary, who was a neonatal nurse, and her cousin, Rachel Steinberger, who has a doctorate in environmental microbiology.
Audiences can expect a simple set with an academic feel. Delfosse credited Junior Jahzeiah James for creating a set that transitions smoothly from an office to a bar and Junior Emilie Kimberly who is serving as prop master. Junior Cheyenne Smith created the costumes, which will help show the levels of professionalism of each character, Delfosse said.
The show isn’t just for the scientific community; it’s for anyone who wants to understand human nature, Delfosse said.
“This is definitely a show that will have you leaving the theatre thinking,” she said. “The theories presented in the show are not just theories for the show but theories that we can think about in everyday life.”
Show times are 7:30 p.m. Oct. 31, Nov. 1 and Nov. 2 with a 2 p.m. Sunday matinee on Nov. 3. Ticket information.
Most computers will open PDF documents automatically, but you may need to download Adobe Reader.