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Past Production

Truck Stop

By Lachlan Philpott
Directed by Marilee Talkington
Oct 1–Oct 24
American Premiere
Venue: The Thick House

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Lachlan Philpott

Sam and Kelly are best friends. At fourteen years old, they spend their lives waiting for texts, for boyfriends, for something exciting to happen, for their moment to arrive. Could it be the arrival of Aisha, the new girl from India? They talk about sex, fantasies, who’s in and who’s out. Bored with school, the girls skip class to hang out at the truck stop on the highway. A truck pulls up. Their hearts race. The trucker’s kind of young. And hot. Three words change their lives. “I dare you.”

Based on real events, this gut-punch of a play by Australia’s Lachlan Philpott shines the headlights on sex, gender, and growing up in the digital age.

Please be advised, mature content.

Winner Best Play for Young Audiences Australian Writer’s Guild Awards 2013 (The AWGIE [Australian Writers Guild Award for Industry Excellence] for Best Play for Young Audiences

Featuring: Jamie Asdorian, Jessica Lynn Carroll◼•, Jeri Lynn Cohen◼•, Chelsea Looy
Dramaturg: Laura Brueckner★
Assistant Director:
Brady Brophy-Hilton
Stage Manager:
Adeline Smith
Assistant Stage Manager: LJ Lee
Scenic Design:
Maya Linke
Scenic Assistant: Adeline Smith
Costume Design:
Miriam R. Lewis
Lighting Design: Andrew Lu
Assistant Lighting Design: Sarina Renteria
Sound Design: Brendan Aanes★
Props Design: Devon LaBelle★
Video Design: Brian Herczog
Logan Ellis
Production Manager: Stephanie Alyson Henderson★

★ Crowded Fire Resident Artist
◼ Member of Actors’ Equity Association


“Gritty, and often gripping drama. This is no old-fashioned listen-to-your-elders cautionary tale. Philpott wants to make us listen to our teens…he’s turned what could be media stereotypes into richly individual characters, as brought to life in director Marilee Talkington’s sharply paced and well defined production.” — Rob Hurwitt, SF Chronicle

“This is a far cry from an after-school special. Rather, in a hyper-theatrical (and engaging) way, he’s showing us what girls are up against, both in their intimate worlds of friends and family and in the greater cultural landscape….The performances here all crackle with vitality and the spark of Philpott’s strong script.” — Chad Jones, TheaterDogs

“Under Marilee Talkington’s direction, Crowded Fire’s production is shrewd and devilishly realistic…there are so many moments of beauty here that it’s hard to believe you’re at the theater, and that you, too, are part of this tribe of lost girls.” — John Wilkins, KQED Arts

“True teen tales infuse gritty, engaging Truck Stop.— Jeanne Schiffman, The Examiner


Teen friendship, power, and sexuality are explored in Lachlan Philpott’s TRUCK STOP receiving its American premiere at Crowded Fire Theater. Directed by Marilee Talkington, TRUCK STOP features this dynamic ensemble of Bay Area actresses pictured left to right Jamie Asdorian (Aisha), Jessica Lynn Carroll (Sam), Jeri Lynn Cohen (multiple roles), and Chelsea Looy (Kelly).

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Kelly (Chelsea Looy) and Sam (Jessica Lynn Carroll) have been friends since they were six. Can Aisha (Jamie Asdorian), the new girl in town, find a place in their inner circle? Does she even want to? Lachlan Philpott explores the complicated nuances of teenagers’ relationships, the role of the outsider, and the responsibilities of the adults in their lives in TRUCK STOP now receiving its American premiere at Crowded Fire Theater.

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Sam (Jessica Lynn Carroll) and Kelly (Chelsea Looy) navigate adolescence in the age of instant exposure, smart phones, and media saturation in Lachlan Philpott’s TRUCK STOP at Crowded Fire Theater.

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In Lachlan Philpott’s TRUCK STOP at Crowded Fire Theater, the tension between a teen’s reality and fantasy is highlighted through Brian Herczog’s video design. Sam’s (Jessica Lynn Carroll) cinematic fantasies are projected in silhouette on the foreboding concrete wall created by set designer Maya Linke. Jeri Lynn Cohen morphs in and out of various characters including Sam’s counselor, Michelle.

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Based on real events, TRUCK STOP, a gut-punch of a play by Australia’s Lachlan Philpott dissects adolescence–sex, gender, and growing up in the digital age. In Crowded Fire Theater’s production Chelsea Looy, Jamie Asdorian, and Jessica Lynn Carroll play coming-of-age teenagers.

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Sam (Jessica Lynn Carroll) and Kelly (Chelsea Looy) are lifelong best friends. Three words, “I dare you,” change their lives and friendship forever in TRUCK STOP by Lachlan Philpott at Crowded Fire Theater.

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Chelsea Looy as Kelly, Jamie Asdorian as Aisha, and Jessica Lynn Carrol as Sam in TRUCK STOP by Lachlan Philpott at Crowded Fire Theater.

Photo by Cheshire Isaacs


2015 Corporate Season Sponsor: Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP
2015 Season Producers:
Dugan Moore, Karena Fiorenza Ingersoll & Emerys Ingersoll
Truck Stop Producers: Andrew Meisel, Brad Rubenstein, Luis Tamayo & David Thompson
Truck Stop Project Support: The Zellerbach Foundation
General Operating Support: The Kenneth Rainin Foundation, Grants for the Arts/Hotel Tax Fund