Be sure to set your calendars for the week of April 6 through April 13 for the showing of “The Bald Soprano”, directed by Roberto Prestigiacomo and starring Nicholas Champion, Mindy Tran, Jackson Beach, Julia Palmer, Alexander Bradley, Kerry Madden and Casey Deal. Prestigiacomo’s production is an update to the original play which premiered on May 11 of 1950. Prestigiacomo explained why putting on such a show makes particular sense today.
“The Bald Soprano is a play of the absurd,” Prestigiacomo said. “The situation you see does not make any sense.”
When Eugà¨ne Ionesco originally conceived the play following World War II, he looked out at a world which no longer made sense to him. In response, he set out to craft a play which reflected that sense of bewilderment. Prestigiacomo’s version of the play takes place in the oval office, three years into Trump’s presidency. Like it’s predecessor, this production features six characters. In the original 1950 play, the cast consisted of two sets of couples (the Smiths and the Martins), the maid, and the fire chief. The template for these characters is the same this time around, with the two couples being the Trumps (Nicholas Champion and Mindy Tran) and the Pences (Jackson Beach and Julia Palmer), with the maid and fire chief characters played by Kellyanne Conway (Kerry Madden) and Sean Spicer (Alex Bradley).
“The idea [for this play] came to me when I [imagined the changes Trump] might make to the Oval Office.”
Although set in the midst of the current divisive sociopolitical atmosphere of the country, Prestigiacomo made a point to dispel any speculations that this production pushes a certain political agenda.
“We are not making fun of this presidency. We are simply using theater to show what we see,” Prestigiacomo said.
According to Prestigiacomo, one of the most exciting aspects of putting on such a play was the challenge that both he and the actors whom he is tasked with directing faced when trying to portray these characters, and to do so within the context of absurdity but without portraying some outlandish version of these characters.
“I think [the actors] really embraced this challenge,” Prestigiacomo said.