Director John Kaufmann explores the absurd life of parenting in Baby With The Bathwater, which opens Thursday, Sept. 29, at 7:30 p.m. in Kresge Theatre.
The play is about those late nights and early mornings with no shortage of crying in the early stages of parenthood.
“For me, this play captures what it feels like to be driven insane by a child...and not recover,” says John.
In addition, the 1984 play written by Christopher Durang, captures what it feels like to be a part of a family, in sometimes equal parts of sadness and hilarity.
Something perhaps unexpected in a play about parenting, especially in the time it was written, is the ever-present core issue of gender identity.
“The absurdity of the play really captures the feeling of confusion around gender identity, whether that’s someone out there figuring out how to be themselves or an older professor’s confusion about “he” and “she” no longer being the only option” says John.
But fair warning, don’t expect political correctness.
“It’s a comedy, but it’s a unique style of comedy. It has some funny things and the next time you think ‘is that a joke?’ It’s unsettling to the audience in that way. It’s also not your typical or traditional comedy,” says John.
But at its heart, the story focuses on the journey a person takes to become themselves, a series of critical moments that everyone can relate to.
“For me in college, it was a time of figuring out who I was and all the ways my parents made me the great person I am, but also screwed me up,” says John.