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April theater: Heartbreak House will get the conversation started

Last night was opening night of Heartbreak House (playing through April 29th) at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts’ Space Theatre. Written by George Bernard Shaw in 1919, the play is not only entertaining but will set the stage for some deep thought and discussion within families homeschooling older teens.

Lise Bruneau and Sarah Nealis in the Denver Center Theatre Company’s production of Heartbreak House.
Vicki Kerr.

The play will transport your teens back to the English countryside as World War I looms on the horizon and Shaw’s pampered and privileged characters enjoy frivolous pursuits as war (and disaster) draws near.

After enjoying the play, your family will be ready for some serious thought and discussion. To help guide you in the discussion, below are several post performance questions to get the conversation rolling:

1. How does Shaw comment on the theme of money and morals? How were some of the characters in the play struggling with the compromise between the two?

2. How would you describe the familial relationships between the characters in the play? What do you believe is behind these relationship issues?

3. Why does Ellie want to marry Mr. Mangan? Thinking about the setting of the play, what are some of the societal issues that may have led to her reasoning? How is marriage like or unlike a business?

4. Why do the characters seem oblivious to the coming war? How do their reactions to the tragedy at the end of the play strengthen your analysis of the characters?

The production is recommended for ages 15 and up. Tickets start at $35 and student rush $10 tickets are available one hour prior to curtain with a valid student ID subject to availability.

For more information or to purchase tickets, go to: or call 303.893.4100.


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