Now Playing

Our Bad Magnet: March 26th thru April 26th

Directed by Carlo Lorenzo Garcia

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On the shores of Scotland, three 9 year old boys begrudgingly befriend a troubled young outsider, a gifted but tormented child who harbors the ability to spin magical, often fable-like fairy tales. The boys, now men, reunite years later to try to piece together the circumstances that led to the mysterious disappearance of their childhood fascination.

Playwright Douglas Maxwell, one of Scotland’s brightest young writing talents, uses his own unique brand of dark humor to take us on a magical journey in which the boundaries between fantasy and reality merge with unpredictable results.

The production team for OUR BAD MAGNET includes: John Wilson (scenic concept/charge artist), Thad Hallstein (scenic advisor), Stefin Sterberl (costume design), Matthew Gawryk (lighting design), Joe Court (sound design), Allison Goetzman (stage management advisor), Michael J. Sanow (technical director), and Anthony DeMarco (stage manager).

Press Snippets

★★★★ – HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!  // “The story is crisp and told with a special flavor that makes you want to know more. Two acts, 7 scenes and less than two hours of sheer mystery and enchantment with these four solid performers, taking us on a magical mystery tour where fantasy and reality merge like magnets.” // – Al Bresloff, Around The Town Chicago

HIGHLY RECOMMENDED! // “This is an ominous, entertaining play about the inspiration for creativity, the validity of memory and an unspoken love. It’s about the art of spinning imaginative stories, coping with years of abuse and about bonding with your buddies. Maxwell’s play is unique, thought-provoking and haunting.”
“Once again Mary-Arrchie demonstrates why they’re one of the best-kept secrets among the Chicago storefront theatres. With excellence that goes back to 1986, productions, such as this, demand to be revived and enjoyed anew. ” // - Colin Douglas, Chicago Theatre Review

“Director Carlo Lorenzo Garcia has meticulously mapped out the play’s topography, especially the contrast between exuberant fairy tales and the gritty ground that nurtures them.” – Lawrence Bommer, Stage and Cinema

“This fascinating play is part fable-like storytelling, part coming-of-age drama, and part mystery. The ensemble acting was terrific. For a well done off-beat drama with ample humor, Our Bad Magnet delivers.” – Tom Williams, ChicagoCritic

Watch & Pictures

Photos by Ashley Rose Photography


Meet the Cast

Dan-BehrendtDan Behrendt (Fraser) is thrilled to be back in Scotland with the Nimstons! Dan has been a Mary-Arrchie company member since 2008 where he has appeared in several productions including Red Light Winter (Jeff Nomination-Best Lead Actor) and the original production of Our Bad Magnet (Jeff Nomination Best Ensemble) along with many others. Mr. Behrendt is also an Artistic Associate with Strange Tree Group where he appeared most recently in The Dead Prince and played Alvin in 2012’s production of Funeral Wedding: The Alvin Play. He has also worked with Court Theater, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Signal Theatre Ensemble and The House Theater. Dan is a graduate of Illinois State University (2005) and The School at Steppenwolf.

Lane-FloresLane Flores (Giggles) is thrilled to be making his debut with Mary-Arrchie Theatre Co.! Lane has worked onstage with Steppenwolf Theatre Company (Lord of the Flies), Raven Theatre (Vieux Carre), Montana Shakespeare in the Parks (Macbeth), and First Folio Theatre (Merchant of Venice). Lane also serves as the technical & co-artistic director for Adapt Theatre Productions. Lane is proudly represented by Lily’s Talent Agency.

Layne-Manzer1Layne Manzer (Paul) will soon be seen in A Red Orchid Theatre’s “Accidentally, Like a Martyr” directed by Shade Murray. He was in the original cast of “Hit The Wall” with The Inconvenience as part of Steppenwolf’s 2012 Garage Rep.  He has worked with TimeLine Theatre, TUTA Theatre, Profiles Theatre, Mary-Arrchie, Theo Ubique, Jackelope Theatre, & The Plagiarists. Layne attended the School at Steppenwolf in 2009. He will be in the soon to be released feature film “No Resolution”.


John Wilson (Alan) is proud to be in this theater again and doing a remount of one of his favorite stories. Recent Credits include: AMERICAN DEAD (Northwestern Univ) DETECTIVE PARTNER HERO VILLIAN (Strawdog), B-SIDE STUDIO (Inconn, New Colony, and Univ of Chicago) NUTCRACKER: Miami Cast (House) TO KILL A MOCKING BIRD U/S (Steppenwolf) NOT A CURE FOR CANCER, 200 FUNNY THINGS, SKETCHBOOK 7-10, (Collaboraction); THE MASTER AND MARGARITA(Strawdog) EL GRITO DEL BRONX, HOUSEHOLD SPIRITS/SR (Goodman).  John is a company member with Collaboraction, an artistic associate with WildClaw and a graduate of the School at Steppenwolf.  Special thanks to my boys, our crew, Rich, Carlo, Hans and Heather.  Please visit my site at

9345983Chris Acevedo (Alan U/S) is so thrilled to be making his debut with Mary-Arrchie, and working with such a wonderful group of artists on this incredible play. Previous Chicago credits include: I Am Not Batman (Adventure Stage Chicago), Velveteen Rabbit (Lifeline Theatre), Romeo & Juliet, and White Tie Ball (Teatro Vista), Big Love (Strawdog Theatre – Jeff Recommended), The One Minute Play Festival (Victory Gardens), Salome (Right Brain Project), An Actor Prepares (University of Chicago), as well as work with American Theatre, Urban Theater, Tympanic Theatre, Genesis Ensemble, Teatro Luna, Pavement Group, Collaboraction, Red Tape, The Ruckus, and the side project. He is a proud founding member of Tympanic Theatre, and is represented by Lily’s Talent. Much love to his wife, Amanda Jane.



Ann Filmer, Natalie DiCristofano, 16th Street Theater, Guy Van Swearingen, A Red Orchid, Kevin Low, Marlon Servellon, Chris Acevedo, Isabel Guzman-Barron, Kevin C. Fox, Gaby Labotka, Anna Capunay, Ziggy Malecki, Ian Streicher, Estela Vega, Casey Peek, Cassandra Rose, S.L. Daniels, Kristin Collins, Gus Menary, Kevin V. Smith, Sarah Bendix, David Narter, TF South High School and Leyden High Schools.