WHEN THE RAIN STOPS FALLING opens in the not too distant future, where resources are scant, the world is in turmoil, and climate change is undeniable. Though the endtimes are a backdrop, playwright Andrew Bovell uses the drama within a family’s history as a parallel for the turbulence in humanity’s. Jumping between people and back through time, each switch reveals more about how the future came to be.
A 120 minute production with no intermission could easily become burdensome, but under Blanka Zizka’s direction at the Wilma Theater the uninterrupted build of tension serves well. RAIN doesn’t smack you over the head with anything, except perhaps the phenomenal stage design (Matt Saunders), including real rain and wind whipping around the theater. Instead, realization slowly creeps in.
Captivating performances all around (Nancy Boykin, Taysha Canales, Keith J. Conallen, Mel Finister, Sarah Gliko, Anthony Martinez-Briggs, Brian Ratcliffe, Steven Rishard, Lindsay Smiling) deliver laughter that often chokes into tears. We see characters interact together on the stage, despite being separated by by space and time. Though at first one grasps for clues as to how the relationships intertwine, by the end clarity extends not just to the plot, but beyond, to how we interact as humans. [Wilma Theater] October 12-November 6, 2016; wilmatheater.org.