New comedy premieres this week at the Detroit Repertory Theatre


From left to right: Sambrano, Jordan, and Lovy in "Swimming Upstream" at the Rep. - COURTESY DETROIT REPERTORY THEATRE
  • Courtesy Detroit Repertory Theatre
  • From left to right: Sambrano, Jordan, and Lovy in "Swimming Upstream" at the Rep.

A new show opens this week at the Detroit Repertory Theatre, and it will mix laughter, romantic foibles, and fish.

Yes, those finned underwater creatures that swim around are involved. You see, it's a comedy about one woman's obsession with salmon.

But this is no "fish story." It's a serious comedy called Swimming Upstream, and it concerns marine biologist Jen, whose research proves that climate change is affecting the world's salmon. The only problem is that her supervisor at work won't let her release her findings. She gets little comfort from her mother, a Ronald Reagan fan, and her love interest, a superhero maven. As the comedy takes its various turns, Jen realizes she can't go with the flow any longer and decides to fight against the currents that aren't running her way.

The Detroit Repertory Theatre production will be the comedy's world premiere, and it's directed by longtime DRT designer, actor, and director Harry Wetzel. The cast includes "Rep" vet Sandra Love Aldridge, as well as Raymond Jordan, Stefanie Sambrano, Audrey Lovy, and Yianni Papadimos.

If you haven't been to the Rep, you should consider making this comedy your first visit. The professional theater company has been based in Detroit for more than a half-century. Newcomers will be surprised to find a gorgeous lounge with a long bar, plush seating, and a modern theater that stages excellent productions. (The well-lit and patrolled parking lot doesn't hurt either.) And no night is classier than the "Champagne Celebration," taking place on the evening of Nov. 2.

Swimming Upstream begins promptly at 8:30 p.m. Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, and 7:30 p.m. Sunday, with matinees at 3 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday, at the Detroit Repertory Theatre, 13103 Woodrow Wilson St., Detroit; 313-868-1347;; tickets are $17 in advance, $20 day of, at

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