Playwrights Local Announces “Hey Siri” by Mary E. Weems at BorderLight Fest

New dramatic play explores the impact of technology on three urban lives. Directed by Michael Oatman, the production runs July 21 through 23 at the Old Stone Church in Cleveland.

Cleveland, OH, July 09, 2022 --( Playwrights Local announces its production of Hey Siri at the BorderLight International Theatre + Fringe Festival in Cleveland. This new drama exploring urban life in the age of technology was written by Mary E. Weems, Ph.D., and is directed by Michael Oatman. The production runs July 21 through 23, 2022, at the special festival venue of the Old Stone Church in Cleveland. Complete information on the production is available at Information on the BorderLight Festival can be found at

The new drama Hey Siri by Mary E. Weems, Ph.D., explores the lives of three very different callers in the same city. Mack is an Iraqi War veteran who suffers from PTSD. Elizabeth is a former doll hoarder without a single relative or friend. Lucky is an agoraphobic whose mother died from a heroin overdose. What happens when all of these isolated people turn to Siri, the voice of their iPhones, for something more than data? Is there insight behind Siri’s responses or is her intelligence truly artificial? Hey Siri tests the value of this pervasive technology when these three users start asking real questions.

Playwright Mary E. Weems, Ph.D., has had numerous works published or produced since 1997. In 2009, an excerpt of her play At Last was part of the Ingenuity Festival. In June 2009, her monologue “Rainwater,” part of a full-length play titled Wearing Rainbows, was selected for the “Queer Shorts 4” Playfest in Madison, WI. In 2002, her piece Woman in the Tree was part of the University of Louisville’s Juneteenth Festival of New Works; her play Another Way to Dance won a 1998 Cleveland Public Theater Chilcote Award. Dr. Weems’ play Move to the Back of the Bus, a 45-minute overview of the Civil Rights Movement, was produced by Young Audiences from 1998 through 2007. Weems’ work Wearing Rainbows and Numbers was produced as part of Cleveland Public Theater’s Big Box in 2007. In 2015, a collection titled Blackeyed: Plays and Monologues was published by Sense Publishing (now Brill/Sense). Currently, Mary Weems is seeking production possibilities for Closure, about the foreclosure crisis, which opened the 2010-11 season at Karamu House; Blink, a play about diversity on a college campus produced at John Carroll University in 2013, 2014, and 2015; and MEAT, which explores the murders of eleven Black women in Cleveland. Weems’ short play Slapped, which won New York’s Downtown Urban Art Festival’s (DUAF) Best ‘Short’ Award in 2021, is currently under licensure with Karamu. In 2015, Weems won the Cleveland Art Prize’s “Emerging Artist Award in Literature.” For further information on the playwright, visit

The cast of Hey Siri includes Michelle Broome, Chelsea Anderson, Lynna Metrisin, and Darryl Tatum. The creative team for the production includes Karen Cirino (costume designer), Maggie Hamilton (sound designer), Lexa B Walker (lighting designer), Paula Washington (stage manager), and Lisa L Wiley (props designer).

Hey Siri runs July 21 through 23, 2022, as part of the BorderLight International Theatre + Fringe Festival in Cleveland. Performances are Thursday, July 21 at 7:45 pm; Friday, July 22 at 7:45 pm; and Saturday, July 23 at 7:00 pm. All shows will be at the special festival venue of the Old Stone Church (91 Public Square, Cleveland, OH 44113).

Tickets for Hey Siri are $15 general admission, and can be purchased through the BorderLight Festival at Alternatively, multiple-show festival packages also are available at For additional information regarding the production of Hey Siri, contact Playwrights Local at or (216) 302­-8856. For additional information on the BorderLight Festival including its current Covid or safety policy, visit

Hey Siri is presented thanks to the generous support of The Paul M. Angell Family Foundation and Cuyahoga Arts & Culture. Additional funding for Playwrights Local is provided by The AHS Foundation, The Char and Chuck Fowler Family Foundation, The Cleveland Foundation, The Cyrus Eaton Foundation, Dramatists Guild Foundation, The George Gund Foundation, and The Ohio Arts Council, as well as private donors listed at

About the Company

Playwrights Local is a theater company in Cleveland. As a playwrights’ center, our goal is to provide a home for dramatic writing in Northeast Ohio. We offer classes and workshops, produce original plays, provide networking opportunities, and engage the community through outreach projects. Learn more about us at Make your tax-deductible contributions to our 501(c)(3) group at

About the Festival

The BorderLight International Theatre + Fringe Festival is a hybrid festival model, featuring a curated selection of international touring productions, collaborations between Cleveland organizations and international artists, and a fringe festival programmed through an open call for submissions, featuring all genres of theatrical performance self-produced by local and national artists. Founded in 2015 by Dale Heinen and Jeffrey Pence, BorderLight’s mission is to present visionary international theatre and build cross-cultural understanding.
Playwrights Local
Tom Hayes
(216) 302-8856