In “RUR (Rossum’s Universal Robots), ” Strawdog Theatre Company takes a sharp look at modern technology’s gifts and curses. Adapted by director Shade Murray from Czech playwright Karel Capek’s 1920 play, “RUR” examines the moral quandary of creating life and questions the criteria for humanity itself.
Crafty Henry Domin (Ryan Bollettino) manages the RUR Robot Factory on a remote island. He receives a visit from Helena (Michaela Petro), who demands that the robot population receive more “humane” treatment from their human overlords. Catnip for the lonely all-male factory staff, Helena’s plans are derailed when Henry seduces and marries her.
Although burdened with exposition-heavy first act and an archaic technological view, the uniformly fine ensemble successfully mines the piece’s humor and keeps the action lively. Standouts John Henry Roberts, Brennan Buhl and Carmine Grisolia create humorous, poignant portrayals of learned men who may have gone too far. (Lisa Buscani)
At Strawdog Theatre, 3829 North Broadway, (773)528-9696, strawdog.org, through October 25.