Theater companies have wrestled with how to produce during the pandemic. Some have gone dark, some have live-streamed shows and Asheville’s Magnetic Theatre, which normally presents from its River Arts District home, has staged an innovative play along the Reed Creek Greenway.
This new, original play follows the story of two characters, Alyx and Dru, through different stages of their lives — with a twist — the audience walks to 11 different scenes staged along the greenway.
Wandering With Magnetic
The company developed Wandering With Magnetic to keep audiences engaged in an outdoor environment.
“something i cared about” is the first in a planned series of outdoor performances.
The innovative story is the brainchild of director Jason Phillips, who enjoys walking the Reed Creek Greenway, near UNC Asheville.
Phillips and co-writers Jamie Knox and Travis Lowe brought the idea to life in a story line that hops back and forth in the lives of Alyx and Dru. Through different life stages, the couple tackles their relationship, disagreements on whether to have children, amusing things they gave up for Lent and the evolving story of their love.
As the audience walks from scene to scene, they have no idea what life stage will be portrayed next.
“The production will appeal to anyone who has loved and lost — or loved at all — it’s a universal story, in a unique experience,” Jones said.
The Magnetic Theatre keeps true to its goal of presenting new, original work that is thoughtful, relevant, unfiltered.
Greenway as Backdrop
In addition to the audience walking to scenes, Magnetic’s innovation is evident with different actors, of differing genders and races, playing Alyx and Dru. In some scenes, the couple is played by two women, or two men, or a man and a woman.