schwartzcenter cornell120The doppelganger mythology brings to mind unwelcome spirits, paranormal look-alikes, and evil twins. For his new play Two Truths and Allie (March 16–18, Black Box Theatre, Cornell's Schwartz Center) trans playwright Joshua Bastian Cole drew inspiration from literary sources such as The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson and The Double by Fyodor Dostoyevsky. Cole, a PhD student in Cornell University's Department of Performing and Media Arts, co-directs the play with fellow PhD student Samuel Nelson Williamson Blake, who also serves as dramaturg.

In Two Truths and Allie, protagonist Bobby is dealing with a devastating breakup and the haunting absence of his lover, Allie. In the midst of his grief, a familiar face from Bobby's past suddenly returns and the boundary between the real and the phantasmagoric frays. "Two Truths and Allie has those elements of the gothic doppelganger monster figure," explains Cole. "There's a sense of darkness, but it's also weird and whimsical. Despite the heartbreak, there are elements of fantasy, magic, and comedy."

Delving into questions of trans/queer visibility and desire, this production features both trans and cis actors from Cornell and the Ithaca community.

Performances of Two Truths and Allie are in the Schwartz Center for the Performing Arts’ Black Box Theatre March 16 at 7:30 p.m., March 17 at 5:00 p.m., and March 18 at 2:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.