In the album Nebraska, Bruce Springsteen sings about small-time crooks and people dying to get out of that place. Coronado reflects some of the same sentiments, which is why the album started playing in director Steve Emily's head as he read the script (plus, it's his all-time favorite album).
The play, written by Dennis Lehane (who penned Mystic River and Shutter Island), will be the third and final performance in the 2011 season for the Springs Ensemble Theatre. It falls perfectly in line with the dark-humored personality of the ensemble, whose past productions include The Smell of the Kill and Glengarry Glen Ross.
As Emily says, "You have to find tomorrow's classic, sometimes."
Coronado follows three dark stories: A young couple (Jeremy Joynt and Carolyn Sinon) plan to commit a horrible crime; a young woman (Beth Clements Mosley) gets into an unhealthy relationship with her therapist (Greg Lanning); and a young man just getting out of prison (Jeff Miller) reunites with his father (David Plambeck), who may not have his son's best interests at heart.
As a release from the company describes it, "Coronado asks the age-old question: how far are you willing to go in the name of love?" Well, apparently pretty far — sex, greed and murder make up a typical day in Coronado.
Though productions of Coronado have been presented in New York, San Francisco and Chicago, this will be its regional premiere (the third regional premiere of SET's six productions in the two years it's been active).
Obviously, the play doesn't have an all-encompassing moral or a grand statement of any kind; it's just a well-told story. And, well, "sometimes you just need a good story," says Emily.