British comedy-drama about relationships plays through March 4 at Backdoor Playhouse

"It’s a play that reminds us all of the basic truth that you don’t know what you had until you’ve lost it," says Mark Creter, artistic director of Tennessee Tech University’s Backdoor Playhouse.

That’s how he describes Closer, a British comedy-drama about modern romantic relationships by Patrick Marber.

TTU Senior Matthew Bassett directs the play, the featured presentation of the Fourth Annual New Directors Series. Show time is set for 8 p.m. on Feb 27, 28, March 1 and 4 and 10 p.m. on March 3.

"It’s set in London, and it traces the history of two romantic relationships and how those relationships affect the lives of the people involved in them," Bassett says.

Although the play offers more than just a glimpse into someone else’s bedroom, Creter adds, some of Marber’s language is intended only for mature audiences.

"Marber’s language can cause a blush, so be warned — this is no Victorian drawing room drama," he said. "Yet the dance of two couples — each in love with a significant other, yet drawn to the other’s other — has all the elegance of an 18th century minuet."

The character of Alice, played by Misty Brown, is a young, pretty and self-destructive stripper whose lover Dan, played by Scott Johnson, is a writer of obituaries but also has literary aspirations. The character of Larry, played by Brad Brown, is a doctor obsessed with sex, and his lover Anna, played by Carrie Foley, is the photographer hired to take Dan’s picture for his book cover.

"In Closer, Marber has created a brilliant exploration into the brutal anatomy of modern romance," Creter says. "To date, Closer has been performed in more than 30 countries. No only are we thrilled to be presenting this play to our audience, but that we are doing so with such a powerful cast and crew."

Bassett agreed, saying, "I believe the production is a good example of what students can do when we all work together."

Tickets are $6 for general admission and $4 for students and senior citizens. For more information, call the Backdoor Playhouse box office at 931/372-6595.

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