Right To Be Forgotten

Sharyn Rothstein's sharp new play is a smart and timely look at how to balance free speech and privacy in a wired age.


Have you ever done something cringeworthily stupid? How do you feel about the prospect that a potential employer or date can find out about it simply by Googling?

These questions are at the heart of Sharyn Rothstein's sharp new play, Right To Be Forgotten, which premiered at the Arena Stage in Washington, D.C., in October. It opens with two endearingly nerdy graduate students, Derril Lark (John Austin) and Sarita Imari (Shubhangi Kuchibhotla), at the end of what has evidently been a pretty good first date. Imari hints that she'd like to see him again. Lark awkwardly responds that she'll probably change her mind if she looks him up online.

Owing to an inept teenage infatuation, #DerrilLark has become a widespread meme for creepy stalking. As this tightly produced drama unfolds, crusading public interest lawyer Marta Lee (Melody Butiu) defends Lark against former law school classmate Eve Selinsky (Guadalupe Campos), now a lobbyist for Big Search. It's a smart and timely look at how to balance free speech and privacy in a wired age.

NEXT: Brickbat: Looking the Other Way

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Where’s the rest of the article?

    Is that all? We get a couple of paragraphs about a play that ran at a single theater in DC from October 10 to November 11?

    And it goes to print for January? Is this thing touring or something?

    It sounds like a topic of interest for us… but if it is a play that happened 2 months ago at a single theater in DC, isn’t it “too local” for a national magazine?

    1. Hey, clicks are clicks; I fell for it too.

      1. Hi folks: The reason for the review is that I expected that the play will be produced around the country in the coming year. When I did the short review, no dates for other venues had yet been set, but now some are. For example, it will appear in Chicago this coming June. See URL:

        Keep an eye out for it in your city.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.