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Beirut by Alan Bowne
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Set in an apocalyptic future where a young man named Torch has been quarantined to a dark, squalid room on the Lower East Side of New York City, after testing positive for a nameless, sexually transmitted disease. In his grimy cell which the locals refer to as "Beirut," Torch passes the time alone, forbidden from contact with the moral population of the outside world. His uninfected girlfriend, Blue, makes the dangerous journey across the quarantine line to be with him. Torch tries to keep her at room's length and for the next hour, they argue lovingly, jokingly, fearfully, bravely, and desperately about sex and death. All the while, Torch pleads with Blue to leave before his resistance fails and he infects her. She chooses the possibility of infection: "I can live without sex and feel dead or risk death and feel alive."


"... Alan Bowne's stunner about love in the plague years. It's 'the near future': we're in a dump of a room on the Lower East Side, where a young man named Torch has been quarantined after testing positive for a nameless disease that sounds a lot like AIDS. His girlfriend, Blue, who has not been infected, makes the dangerous journey across the quarantine line to be with him ... The marvel of Mr Bowne's work is the richly raunchy language, tuned to the gritty rhythms of the street. It's crude yet lyrical; even at its most scatological, the dialog sings ... They (Torch and Blue) are a Romeo and Juliet of the boroughs, an East Side story ... the poetry and power of BEIRUT ..." -Walter Goodman, The New York Times "


... Alan Bowne makes a statement about sexually transmitted disease that is more powerful than all the soapbox orations which have been attempted theatrically to explore the subject. He deals with the human spirit as it faces the inevitable, and it is a spirit of hope and love, of logic and of empathy ..." -T H McCulloh, Drama-Logue

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