Who decided that pink was for girls and blue was for boys? When did princesses become a “girly thing” and dinosaurs turn into something much more macho? And at what point do these gendered conventions start affecting kids? These are just some of the questions that Daniel Pearle’s A Kid Like Jake asks.
The play, running at Chicago’s About Face Theatre in a production directed by Keira Fromm (Feb. 6–Mar. 15), follows two New York City parents who are applying for kindergarten programs for their four-year-old. When a concerned counselor voices reservations over the child’s love of Cinderella and dress-up, his ability to succeed in school is doubted. The play won the Laurents/Hatcher playwriting prize and premiered at Lincoln Center Theater in 2013 in a production starring Carla Gugino. About Face will host weekly post-show discussions to start conversations about gender development in contemporary parenting.