As its title suggests, Mules doesn't glamorize the life of a drug runner. Clean Break Theater Company commissioned the drama from British playwright Winsome Pinnock, who based it on true stories from women prisoners. High rollers these aren't: Pinnock offers a graphic portrait of the lowest rank in drug trafficking, the courier, or "mule."
Dealers along a London-Jamaica pipeline send worldly representatives to recruit young women from the slums and the streets, using the lure of international travel, tax-free wealth, and what might seem like an escape from the relentless grind of poverty and violence. Despite the prevailing sentiment that they have nothing to lose, recruits soon find that the jet-setting circle is equally rife with violence. Diane Wynter, whose directorial credits include TV and film as well as stage productions with Samuel L. Jackson and Angela Bassett, oversees the critically acclaimed show, which opens the Magic's 31st season. ACT alumnae Dawn-Elin Fraser and Andrea Kate Harris and Medea Project veteran Tina Marie Murray play 12 different roles in Mules, which previews at 8 p.m. Wednesday (and runs through Nov. 8) at the Magic Theater, Building D, Fort Mason, Marina & Buchanan, S.F. Admission is $18-32; call 441-8822. (