The Kennedy Center



Thursday, October 12, 2017 - Sunday, October 15, 2017


This pulsating new multimedia documentary theater work—derived from the real-life stories of six families exploring issues of mental health, addiction, and gender and sexual identity—features an evocative folk rock score, video projections, and emotionally charged movement. 

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“Terrific, moving… the production’s emotional fluency is bell-clear.”—The New York Times


This New York Times Critics’ Pick is a pulsating new multimedia documentary theater work from En Garde Arts that speaks to our collective search for connection and hope as families navigate the complexities of their children coming of age in 21st-century America. The production is derived from the real-life stories of six families—narratives exploring issues of mental health, addiction, and gender and sexual identity. Video and projection design combines sweeping landscapes with documentary footage of parents, veering from familiar domestic confines to the harshness of the world outdoors. Featuring an evocative, original folk rock score and highly visceral movement choreography, this compelling drama begs the crucial question: how do we persevere when we feel most alone in the world? 

Note: this performance contains mature content and strong language. Recommended for age 14 and up.

Performance Timing: Approximately 90 minutes, with no intermission.

"Through the use of performance, video of real families, and original music, WILDERNESS forges a palpable connection for the audience members in a way that I have not witnessed before, and engages them in a way that motivates sincere emotional and intellectual reflection."—Jess Shatkin, Vice Chair for Education, Child Study Center at NYU

"I was so moved by the play and although I meet with families every day, I learned so much last night and felt a range of emotions that in the context of therapy I usually keep a bit under wraps. Thank you, thank you."—Anne Marie Albano, Professor of Medical Psychology in Psychiatry at Columbia University