When Santa Barbara audiences last saw Rod Lathim’s autobiographical play, Unfinished Business, in 2012 and then again in 2013, it was a heartfelt portrayal of his experience of his mother’s death, with liberal doses of humor among the poignancy.

Running at the Lobero Theatre through Sunday, the current incarnation of the play, written, directed, and produced by Lathim, retains all of this but has been restructured and expanded, with additional scenes and characters. As before, audience seating on three sides transform the Lobero stage into an intimate black box.

Many of the actors reprise their previous roles here, well-known and well-loved locals including Brian Harwell as David, Ann Dusenberry as the spirit of his mother, Marion Freitag as Grandma, Katie Thatcher as eccentric neighbor Sally and Solomon N’dungu as the mysterious man in white. Laura Mancuso is to be commended for again playing the role of the mother’s earthly body, who mostly just lies in the bed, but even so brings the necessary presence to the proceedings.

All are excellent, this time around seeming to have deepened their embrace of the characters and commitment to the material.

Jenna Scanlon capably steps into the role of Sis, an interesting acting challenge, as she and Harwell are romantic partners in real life, here playing siblings.

The earlier versions dramatized the earthly happenings surrounding the mother’s death, as well as delving into the world unseen by most, as David finds he is able to feel, and finally see, spirits gathering to help his mother cross over to the other side.

The new production takes it a step further, with a multi-layered approach. Each scene takes us deeper into other realms.

Added to the cast is a chorus of six characters — Are they angels? Spirit guides? Other? — played by Laurel Lyle, Leslie Gangl Howe, Jay Carlander, Cali Rae Turner, Luke Mullen and Dillon Yuhasz.

In the second act, which is all new material, we see not only the loved ones and guide who appear at the time of crossing over, but this chorus observing and (mostly) cheering them on, embodying presences with consciousness and wisdom beyond those of us “earth jockeys.”

Mullen, a student at La Colina Junior High, is a standout here, with a charm reminiscent of a young Joseph Gordon-Levitt. Yuhasz delivers some very funny lines with his usual grace, and Laurel Lyle is confident and steady as the apparent leader of the group.

Award-winning scenic and lighting designer Patricia Frank’s contribution is notable as well, in subtle ways enhancing the atmosphere.

Local agencies addressing death and dying in our community are represented with information tables in front of the theater before the show, providing practical support in addition to the spiritual and metaphysical questions raised by the play.

For those who have experienced the loss of a loved one, and  for those who have not yet done so, this production offers laughter, tears, comfort and some possibilities perhaps not yet considered. Take this chance to see an entirely unique view of the end of life, while there is still time.

Tickets are available for the Sunday 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. shows. Purchase online by clicking here or call the Lobero box office at 805.963.0761.

— Justine Sutton is a Santa Barbara freelance writer and frequent Noozhawk reviewer. The opinions expressed are her own.