Written and translated by Maria Milisavljevic
Directed by Maria Mileaf

U.S. Premiere

We welcome German writer Maria Milisavljevic for her U.S. debut with ABYSS. Maria Mileaf, who led our productions of MONSIUER IBRAHIM AND THE FLOWERS OF THE KORAN (2003) and SAKHARAM BINDER (2004), directs this tense and haunting play.

“An emotionally powerful thriller that rustles and whispers about loss”
– Der Spiegel

Karla disappears after going out to buy groceries. The police aren’t inclined to take the case seriously – young people go missing every day, only to turn up again after a week of hard partying – so her friends undertake the search themselves. As they delve into the mystery, we’re drawn ever more deeply into the profound bond they share, which sets them apart from the city around them.


November 7 – December 6
Mon, Wed – Sat @ 7:30PM, Sat @ 2:00PM & Sun @ 4:00PM

For Previews through Nov. 15
$20 General Admission / $35 Premium Reserved
(Student Tickets: $15 advance/$10 Rush w/ID)

For all other performances through Dec. 6
$35 General Admission / $45 Premium Reserved
(Student Tickets: $15 advance/$10 Rush w/ID)



Extend your ABYSS experience to include food and drinks at some of our favorite restaurants around Theaterlab.

View ABYSS Idea Lab Schedule



GI_Logo_horizontal_black_sRGBIn collaboration with, and the generous support of the Goethe-Institut.





ABYSS Artwork Photo by Jonathan L.



PlayCo’s IDEA LAB is expanding! In addition to inviting artists, scholars and community leaders to share their perspectives on the plays in our season, we’re creating a new strand of conversation with PLAYBACK – a series of open and informal conversations to share responses and connect with the issues and themes in our work.

PlayCo staff members, ambassadors and special guests will kick off these intimate 20-30 minute post-show chats, as an opportunity to reflect together on what we’ve heard and seen, and what we’ll take away. Join us after each THURSDAY EVENING and SATURDAY MATINEE performance (unless otherwise noted) to add your voice!

All Idea Labs and PlayBack conversations will be at Theaterlab, 357 West 36th Street, 3rd Fl immediately following the performance (ABYSS will run approximately 90 minutes) and all are free and open to the public.

PlayBacks start November 12

Artists in Conversation
November 18
Playwright Maria Milisavljevic, Director Maria Mileaf and Dramaturg Linda Bartholomai, talk with PlayCo Founding Producer Kate Loewald on their collaboration for Abyss.

Panel Discussion 
November 28 (Matinee)
The Migrant Crisis at Home and Abroad
Marianne Scharf and Jennifer Sime, two leaders at the forefront of immigrant and refugee issues, will discuss the global migrant and resettlement crisis and how it resonates with Abyss.

Interactive Performance Piece
December 4
Aisha Cousins – Learn/Unlearn vs. I Heart Cops
Partly inspired by her own experience when an acquaintance disappeared, playwright Maria Milisavljevic’s Abyss touches on one community’s relationship with the local police in Berlin. Join us for the second public showing of “Learn / Unlearn”, a performance score by Brooklyn-based artist Aisha Cousins. The December 4 event will use as its subject matter a project titled “I <3 Cops.” Cousins originally developed the piece as part of The Laundromat Project’s 2014 Community Art Workshop series to engage black audiences in processing their history of abuse at the hands of police officers.

The Buzz

“This poetic drama is genuinely artful. And it will take you places you didn’t expect to go.”

“[Abyss] evokes those two pillars of art house cinema, Antonioni’s “L’Avventura” (1960)…and Truffaut’s “Jules and Jim” (1962).”

“A consideration of some very topical questions of European national identities in a time of permeable and shifting borders.”

The New York Times

“What moves underneath Abyss is an exploration of what we’re capable of amidst tragedy and who we become in its aftermath; this is a beautiful and challenging work.”

New York Theatre Review

ABYSS Video Series



As we prepare for the U.S. debut of poetic thriller, ABYSS, help us in our search for Karla. Where do you think she could be? #WHERESKARLA



Karla’s closest friends launch a search of their own. Join the search. ‪#‎whereskarla‬ ‪#‎abyss‬



She didn’t just take off. #WheresKarla



You got to see this. Today’s paper. Those liars. ‪#‎WheresKarla‬



Three weeks and a day. All will be okay. We will be okay. #WheresKarla #RedRubberBoots #JointheSearch

It's been two days

Since yesterday, the day before yesterday. #whereskarla



It’s been four days. #WheresKarla #Abyss


Screen Shot 2015-10-08 at 5.33.08 PM

Ten Days. Does Karla do things like this? #‎WheresKarla‬ #‎RedRubberBoots‬



All will be fine. Karla. Is. Fine. #WheresKarla #RedRubberBoots



Everyday makes it harder to find her. #WheresKarla #RedRubberBoots