WTOP | Theater Alliance’s ‘Mnemonic’ sparks memories at Anacostia Playhouse

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WASHINGTON — Have you ever picked up an item that triggered a memory?

 That’s the idea behind “Mnemonic” by Theater Alliance at Anacostia Playhouse now through April 9.

“‘Mnemonic’ is a wildly exciting theatrical journey,” artistic director Colin Hovde told WTOP. “A ‘mnemonic’ is a sort of physical device [that triggers memory]. You pick up a rock and it reminds you of something. Someone picks up a watch and — bam — they’re in a taxi remembering a conversation they had with the taxi driver. They look at a chair and it reminds them of the story of the Iceman.”

Yes, the production juxtaposes something as epic as the discovery of the 5,000-year-old “Iceman” Ötzi in the Austrian-Italian Alps, against something as intimate as a modern-day romantic couple.

“You see those two stories juxtaposed and interwoven,” Hovde said. “What that means to humanity to find that ancient corpse … and a very micro love story about this couple who’s been disconnected as the woman tries to find out who her father was and go on the journey of connecting her past.”

In this way, the piece asks both intimate and grand questions about the meaning of “home.”