Our Dear Dead Drug Lord Is a Black Comedy Ode to Miami
In 2017, Alexis Scheer channeled her South Florida roots to write Our Dear Dead Drug Lord, a play about a gang of misguided Miami teens trying to resurrect Pablo Escobar. Zoetic Stage, a local theater company, is opening the play's 305 debut on Thursday, May 5, at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts’ Carnival Studio Theater.
“This is the Miami play that you need to see because it's real, it's honest, it's in your face, and it's now,” says Stuart Meltzer, artistic director of Zoetic Stage. “It’s also funny as fuck.”
The play centers on four high school girls who have a “Dead Leaders Club” meeting once a month in a backyard treehouse — and each brings their own background, traumas, and personality to the (as you’ll find out if you see it) unique plot.
A central element of the storyline is the girls’ creepy and satirical attempt to communicate with the spirit of cartel drug lord Pablo Escobar, a spin Scheer and Meltzer say is admittedly dark and potentially triggering.
“I'm the American-born daughter who didn't have to deal with any of that,” Scheer explains, “but I'm still curious about it and wanted to kind of touch and play with that in a really subversive and shocking way.”
Scheer says she wrote the play in 2017 in reaction to Donald Trump’s election. At the time, she'd recently graduated with a musical theater degree from Boston Conservatory at Berklee and founded Off the Grid Theatre Company.