Ever wondered just what it’s like to be a cabbie? You know, picking up absolute strangers and carting them around for anywhere from three to 15 minutes, eavesdropping on their random lives? You can venture a little bit into this world via the pages of this magazine (see Fare is Fair, page 7), or you can see Hell Cab.
Hell Cab, by Will Kern, follows a young cab- driver (played by the engaging Nic Mevoli) through a day on the job through the posh and rough neighborhoods of Chicago. Told in short scenes, the play touches on racism, sexuality (abuse and enjoyment), drugs, class and gender issues, and much more. Kern’s comedic scenes are uproarious: a cracked-out junkie looking to score with the cab as his getaway, a pent-up lawyer unleashing her passions on our poor, hapless driver, and two Yankees fans that want all of Chicago to know, from the cab, that the “Cubs suck!” The dramatic scenes (a rape, domestic abuse) are well done but out of place in what seems to me to be a killer dark comedy.
The young, hip cast is smartly directed by Ackia, and takes turns on different nights playing many different roles and bring to life a number of unforgettable characters. This is a little gem hidden in the dark Under St. Mark’s.