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Is It possible for Americans to think rather than react?

To listen rather than talk?

Probably not, but one can hope.

Here in The Panic Room.

                   KEY CONTACT

Writer/Director/Producer John Becker


Writer/Director Statement

We all see memes and opinions on social media that drive us nuts. If you lean toward the left, you might wonder how anyone can possibly believe that global warming isn't real. If you lean toward the right, you might think global warming is a media-created doomsday scenario to sell ad space. The Panic Room is a place where you can ask questions of people who think differently than you.

In The Panic Room, you will be heard. We will have challenging discussions, but in a space that values respect over name-calling, the truth over misinformation. We will try to find common ground, connection, and solutions.

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Each episode will also include relevant brief clips of political figures in the news, usually proving why they are more the problem than the solution. They do add valuable comedy, though. 

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Each episode will feature two people, representing the left and right wings, who will react to two questions posed by the series creator, playwright/filmmaker John Becker. They are told in advance that the purpose of the series is to be challenged with controversial issues, but to show respect, stay with facts, and find common ground. If they state what they believe is a fact, those assertions are fact-checked and included as captions.

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John Becker has won the Maryland State Arts Council Individual Artist Award three times, for fiction and playwriting. His play Summit Meeting was performed at the Kennedy Center for a festival, where it was awarded 1st place by audience vote. He had plays performed four years in a row at the Source Theatre in DC, had a play performed Off-Broadway at the Emerging Artists Theatre, along with many other productions. He was commissioned by Farrar, Straus, and Giroux to co-write and co-direct the book trailer for Susan Coll's The Stager. Recently, his play The Ghosts of Dickens was performed virtually by Penny Seats Theatre in Ann Arbor, and his play Torn will be performed in late fall of 2022 at Avant Bard Theatre in D.C. He has written articles for Howlround at Emerson College, DC Theatre Scene, and DC Theater Arts.

You can download the entire press kit by clicking the PDF button below!

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