The Gift Theatre Presents the World Premiere The Locusts

Sep 22, 2022
The Gift Theatre  Presents the World Premiere

The Gift Theatre will conclude its 2022 season with the world premiere of Jennifer Rumberger's chilling thriller The Locusts, commissioned and developed by The Gift and directed by Ensemble Member John Gawlik. The Locusts will play October 20 - November 19, 2022 at Theater Wit, 1229 W. Belmont Ave. in Chicago. 

With a serial killer on the loose in Ella's small hometown of Vero Beach, Florida, she's called up from her busy career in the Miami police force to help apprehend him. At home, she's confronted with the life she left behind: her pregnant and struggling sister, her scared young niece, who like Ella, is desperate to find a life somewhere else, and the dark events of her childhood that she's tried to forget. As the murders grow more horrific and the small community is frozen by fear, Ella realizes she has to confront the events of her dark past in order to stop him.

Playwright Jennifer Rumberger comments, "A few years ago, Mike Thornton approached me about writing a play for the ensemble members of the Gift, and sent me an article about the 200th anniversary of the publication of Frankenstein as a potential starting point. Mary Shelley was such a young girl dealing with a massive amount of trauma in her life by writing this classic horror story. At the same time, I was working on a serial-killer play, staying up late reading true crime novels and getting so furious about how these deranged men were deciding the path of women's lives, when my partner remarked that perhaps they were both the same play. Over time, The Locusts ended up being a play that asks how women of different generations deal with the threat of male violence - a threat that looms in some way over all of the characters in the play, as well as over our current world and the legislation we see happening in America before our eyes." 

The production features Ensemble Members Cyd Blakewell, Brittany Burch and Jennifer Glasse with guest artists Mariah Sydnei Gordon, Renee Lockett and Patrick Weber.