UM School of Theatre & Dance to Present ‘In the Next Room, or the Vibrator Play’

February 08, 2018

MISSOULA – The University of Montana School of Theatre & Dance will present the Tony-nominated “In the Next Room, or the vibrator play” to audiences later this month.

“Playwright Sarah Ruhl presents ‘In the Next Room’ as a contemporary exploration of the intimate details of the historical threshold of the medical and social acknowledgment of female sexuality – a historical shift in social consciousness that is quite applicable to our current social climate,” said MFA acting candidate Matt McDaniel.

Directed by UM theatre Associate Professor John Kenneth DeBoer, performances will be held at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday, Feb. 21-24, and Wednesday through Friday, Feb. 28-March 2. Performances also will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 25, and Saturday through Sunday, March 3-4. All performances will be held in the Masquer Theatre in UM’s Performing Arts and Radio/Television Center.

General admission costs $16, while senior and student admission costs $14. Admission for children 12 and under costs $10. Tickets are available by calling the UMArts Box Office at 406-243-4581 between noon and 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, or online at

Set in the 1880s, this comedy of manners connects the dawn of the age of electricity with the awakening of female sexuality at the end of the American Victorian era. Ruhl was inspired by the bizarre historical fact that at the time, doctors used vibrators to treat “hysterical” women (and some men).

“‘In the Next Room’ is an intimate, beautifully balanced look at love, longing and relationships,” DeBoer said.

The play centers on Dr. Givings; his wife, Catherine; and how his new therapy affects their entire household. McDaniel will play the role of Dr. Givings as a portion of his final creative project for the MFA.

For more information, call DeBoer at 812-322-2505 or email A complete schedule of UM School of Theatre & Dance productions for the academic year is available at

Audience discretion is advised: “In the Next Room” includes adult themes and nudity.


Contact: John DeBoer, associate professor, 812-322-2505,