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Mark Donahue

Mark Donahue

Mark Donahue is a member of the Chicago Dramatists Playwrights Network. His play Say Prix Fixe received a staged reading under the direction of Ann Filmer at Chicago Dramatists in June 2008 as part of the Saturday Series and was the runner-up in the 2008 Nancy Weil New Play Search. His play Night Work received a staged reading at CD in July 2007 and was a finalist in the 2007 Weil Play Search. Mark has written music reviews and articles for The Associated Press, the Boston Phoenix, Skyscraper Magazine and Hit It or Quit It Magazine. He’s also had short fiction published by Basta! Magazine in Buffalo, N.Y. A graduate of Xavier University and Syracuse University, Mark lives in Chicago with his wife, the poet Erika Eckart, and works as an editor for Penton Media

SAY PRIX FIXE

Pearce, a newspaper restaurant critic, has been saddled with Kanter as part of a mentoring program. Used to working alone, Pearce despises the pairing, but Kanter pushes to engage him. She feels her beat has become suffocating. Pearce admits he feels the same way and wants to get out. But as pressure builds that the restaurant industry has discovered his identity, Pearce hides. Kanter confronts him, revealing that she knows his “secret”: He can’t taste. Pearce confesses that he recently went to a restaurant, had a dish and lost his taste. He feels if he returns and orders the same thing, he can get it back and leave the paper for good. Pearce goes back, eats the dish and regains his taste but is fired after his editor discovers he’s been reusing old reviews instead of writing new ones. Weeks later, Kanter finds Pearce at a restaurant working as a waiter — now another one of the industry’s faceless servants.