Cyclist-driver relationship at the heart of new Chicago play

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CHICAGO -- There’s a new play in Chicago about a bicyclist who is hit and killed by a car.

It’s inspired by a real life crash that happened to Brendan Smith, an avid cyclist who was involved in a serious crash five years ago at Racine and Roscoe.

The driver ran a red and hit him, then fled the scene.

“My nose was broken and my ear was shredded,” Smith said.

Thankfully, Smith is ok with help from physical therapy for injuries to his back and neck.

But his incident left a lasting impression on his friend Neil Connelly.

Connelly decided to write a play called “Ride,” a fictional account of a bicyclist hit and killed by a vehicle.

“I wanted to open the conversation up between people who drive cars and ride bikes because there’s been this uneasy truce between those two groups in Chicago it seems like,” Connelly said.

Some of the actors in the play are also cyclists and they hope the play helps shed light on the importance of bike safety.

Aside from creating an entertaining play, those involved say they also hope their work helps open up a dialogue between cyclists and drivers to help improve safety on the roads.

The play is a production of the Under the Rug Theatre Company and will run at The Den Theatre on Milwaukee through the weekend.

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