REVIEW: Seeking Immortality in Know Theatre’s ‘Kairos’

If someone offered you the opportunity to live forever, would you? This forms the basis of 'Kairos'

By Alan Jozwiak

If someone offered you the opportunity to live forever, would you?*

For Gina (Maggie Lou Rader) and David (Ryan-Chavez Richmond), a life of immortality is not something that can fantasize about.  It becomes a tantalizing reality for this couple. Their story forms the basis of Kairos, the Lisa Sanaye Dring play being presenting by Know Theatre of Cincinnati.

The Plot of Kairos

Kairos follows Gina and David from the early days of their relationship through their acceptance into a program that gives them access to Prometheus, a drug that allows their cells to stop aging. In short, they will end up becoming immortal. Over the course of this play, we see Gina and David deal with family conflicts and the inevitable separations which result from their decision to take Prometheus.

I can’t give much more of the play away for fear of spoiling it for you.  The path they decide to take and the troubles they will have are an integral part of the story that would be spoiled through too much of a reveal.

The Actors

Kairos has some strong acting with the two performers.  Maggie Lou Rader’s Gina is a complex modern woman who has to navigate love, family, disappointment, and the prospects of immortality. Rader does a fine job revealing the humanity of Gina, showing her strength and spirit, as well as showing her foibles and failings.  There is a point when Gina makes a major life decision without consulting David. I loved how the audience could both sympathize with Gina’s plight and empathize with the hardness of the decision she needs to make.  In short, Rader is able to sculpt the complexities of Gina’s character in ways that are wonderful to watch.

Ryan-Chaves Richmond plays an equally human David, a classics scholar who has to come to grips with some difficult family situations as he is pursues his application to take Prometheus.  Richmond does a great job projecting the angst and grief from this family situation, making his character both relatable and believable.  He is also able to establish a relationship shorthand with Rader which adds more authenticity to their relationship.  It is fascinating to watch this shorthand evolve as their relationship progresses.

Maggie Lou Rader as Gina and Ryan-Chavez Richmond as David in Kairos. Photo credit to Dan R. Winters Photography.

The Director and Production Staff

Director Rebecca Wear gives her actors a sparse space to perform in. The stage is bare, save for a stylized tree (more on that in a minute) and a park bench. Wear wisely allows her actors the ability to find specific spaces of connection within that spare stage. This serves to move the action of the play for scene to scene without a lot of interruption. Under Wear’s direction, Rader and Richmond make the most of that space and fill it with any number of different scenes in their relationship.

Resident Lighting and Scenic Designer and Know Theatre’s Producing Artistic Director Andrew Hungerford does a wonderful job with his creation of the aforementioned tree. Part grounded in reality and part reaching into a dreamscape which makes immortality a reality, the tree echoes the human nature of trying to fundamentally change nature through its see-through plastic leaves. It becomes a metaphor for this couple’s situation, a literal tree of life which can dispel death forever.

Maggie Lou Rader as Gina and Ryan-Chavez Richmond as David in Kairos.
Maggie Lou Rader as Gina and Ryan-Chavez Richmond as David in Kairos. Photo credit to Dan R. Winters Photography.


 I recommend this show for admirers of alternative theatre. Romantics who crave an unusual kind of love story, and lovers who desire to live forever (you know who you are) will also love it.  It is a show that raises more questions than it answers. Speaking of answers, Kairos (pronounced Ki-ros) is the Greek god who is “the personification of opportunity, luck, and the right moment” (Wikipedia). The question becomes: does this couple take full advantage of their right moment?


Kairos runs February 16-March 3, 2024 at Know Theatre of Cincinnati. Tickets can be found on Know’s website: Click here for tickets

* I’d probably spend my first century eating ice cream and binge-watching all the shows people keep on telling me that I should see.  My second century would be working off the last century’s worth of ice cream at the gym.

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