Co-produced with Off-Broadway's The Shed, Los Angeles' Center Theatre Group presents the Los Angeles run of The Search for Signs of Intelligent Life starring Emmy-nominated Saturday Night Live star Cecily Strong. The run opened September 28 and is set through October 23.
Tony nominee Leigh Silverman (Violet, Grand Horizons) helmed the new staging, with a script freshly revisited by playwright Jane Wagner, who wrote the tour-de-force in 1985 to be performed by her partner (now wife) Lily Tomlin. Tomlin, who serves as executive producer along with Wagner for The Shed production, won a Best Actress Tony Award for the show's first Broadway production.
The Search for Signs of Intelligent Life in the Universe begins with a character named Trudy, who serves as guide to aliens (and the audience) searching for intelligent life on Earth. The production explores American society, art, power, and the feminist movement through a comedic and quick-witted investigation.
“I have long been fascinated by the mystical implications of quantum theory,” said Wagner in a statement. “In truth, my dream was to get the audience to experience the universality of the deep interconnectedness of all living things—with Trudy as the guide... I wanted us to flash on just that thought—that we’re all connected.”
The creative team for the Los Angeles run includes scenic designers Christine Jones and Mary Hamrick, costume designer Anita Yavich, lighting designer Lap Chi Chu, sound designer Jeff Gardner, wig designer Joseph Whitmeyer, and illusion designer Steve Cuiffo, with composition by Andrea “Slim” Allmond. The production stage managers include Michelle Blair, Lora K. Powell, Justin Scribner, and Shawna Voragen.
The solo show previously ran at The Shed December 21, 2021-February 6, 2022.