created by thomas murray

Hector Avalos was killed by a drunk driver as he rode his bicycle home from work. This beloved son, fearless boyfriend, and devoted friend was taken in the blink of an eye. In the aftermath was a quest for justice. Featuring interviews with Hector's family and friends and court transcripts, this immersive multimedia production looks at the evolution of our city streets over the last century. Who has the right of way? And how do we stop hitting and killing pedestrians and bicyclists?

Topics explored:

  • multimodal transportation infrastructure
  • vulnerable road user laws
  • land use planning
  • inattentional blindness
  • history of the automobile in the United States

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world premiere production at moss arts center
march 2018

Each performance included a brief conversation about local bike policies and infrastructure led by one of our community partners:

Featuring Stephen Balani, Andrew Bartee, Ryan Chapman, Anastasia Conyers, Maya Garcia, Rodney McKeithan, and Alexandra Yau

With designs by John Ambrosone, Felysia Furnary, Mordecai Lecky, Mary Rathell, and Tanner Upthegrove

Production was supported by grants from the Institute for Creativity, Arts, and Technology and the School of Performing Arts at Virginia Tech

Traveling at the speeds that we do in our automobiles, our brains can’t quite keep up with the environment. The faster we go, the more our cone of vision narrows, so we miss bicyclists and pedestrians, in part, because they’re traveling at a different speed and they’re out of our peripheral vision. Because there aren’t as many of them, we’re not trained to look for them.
— Thomas Murray, in an interview with NPR

workshop productions

Development of The Right of Way began in February 2014. Its first public reading in May 2014 was part of the Trellis series at the Greenhouse Theater Center in Chicago. Its cast included Ashley Alvarez, Michael Leon, Molly Rose Lewis, Eleni Pappageorge, Shariba Rivers, Elise Spoerlein, and Lew Wallace.

After substantial additions and rewrites, three additional public readings were held.

The cast for those readings included Ryan Chapman, Caroline Davis, Miles Gheesling, Mary Pat Gilliam, Abigale Mitchell, Mary Ryan, Caroline Silas, and Pete Sheldon