Rattlestick Theater Focuses on Social Change in New Season
The solo piece, which features music by Gloria Estefan, Cher and Maria Bethânia, explores the intersection of queer and Latino identity in the tumultuous relationship between a larger-than-life Brazilian mother and her son. “It’s deeply personal, alive and funny,” Topol said of the show, which unveils the secrets, memories, fears and celebrations of being a first-generation American and immigrant. Rattlestick’s fellow director Danilo Gambini will oversee the world premiere, which will be his first professional production in the United States after previously working as an opera and musical theater director in his home country, the Brazil.
“It will make everyone think about their relationship with their mother,” Topol said.
The show will be followed in November by Atlanta playwright Mansa Ra “In the Southern Breeze,” an absurd drama that centers the experience of black men through centuries of American history by following five black men who meet in the afterlife after their murders. Christopher Betts will lead.
Topol, who first got a glimpse of the play when Rattlestick produced a reading of it in 2018, said: “I couldn’t get it out of my head, especially when it was all going on with George Floyd and the protests. It really speaks at this time.
In the last show of the season, and the only one to be presented exclusively online, viewers will be invited to plot their own theatrical experience in the interactive virtual game “No Address”, which requires viewers to work together in small groups on Zoom to make choices. that illustrate the challenges of homelessness. The work, written by Hungarian artist Martin Boross and adapted by Jonathan Payne, whose day job works in social services, will be presented virtually in January and February.
“The irony is that every choice you make as a character costs money or years of your life,” Topol said, noting that they include whether a character will sleep on the streets or in a hostel, s ‘he will ask for money or try to find work. “I hope people can evolve into more empathy and change after seeing this play.”
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