'Pinkolandia' A Remarkable Play with Exceptional Performances Now at Two River Theater
Pinkolandia couldn't be more relevant, an extraordinary show that Two River Theater audiences will remember long after they see the performance. It is compelling story of a Chilean family, exiled from their homeland, living in Wisconsin. As they search for their sense of belonging, they also struggle to understand themselves, each other and the politics that thrust them into Reagan-era America.
Written by Andrea Thome and directed by Jose Zayas, Pinkolandia is performed in the Marion Huber Theater through March 23rd. The intimate size of the theater is just right to draw the audience into this captivating show.
The show was first introduced to Red Bank audiences as a reading in their 2012 Crossing Borders festival of new Latino Plays. Two River's world premiere is part of the Lark Play Development's "Launching New Plays into the Repertoire Initiative" supported by The Andrew Mellon Foundation.
Gaby (Andrea Morales) is 8, deeply embedded in her fantasy land, Closet World, which she shares with her sister Beny (Maria Helan). Beny is an intelligent young girl and a rebellious pre-teen. She is less engaged in Gaby's imaginary play as she strives to discover her political and social identity.
Dad (Varin Ayala) and Mom (Annie Henk) are loving parents. Yet, they are clearly struggling with their attitudinal differences and the separation from their homeland. The children's curiosities about their parents and their culture are engaged by their uncle, Tio Ignacio (David Cromett), when he comes to visit. His openness prompts new discussions and challenges in the family dynamic.
With Gabriel Sloyer playing several parts including Pepe, members of the cast are adept at assuming multiple roles in the show; classmates, a teacher, an older man, a polar bear. These additional characters develop essential scenes and give the audience an understanding of young Gaby's imagination, Beny's school dilemmas, and the political struggles in Chile.
Pinkolandia has dialogue in both English and Spanish. With the performances of this stellar cast, even people who do not understand Spanish language will be completely engaged in the play.
This story is significant one, about being an American. Pinkolandia is wonderfully staged, with just enough humor and sentimentality to entertain while maintaining the essence of its important themes. Pinkolandia is a gift to metropolitan area audiences and should be seen by young and old alike.
Ticket prices range from $45.00 to $65.00 with discounts available for groups, seniors and U.S. military personnel, their families and veterans. Tickets for patrons under age 30 are $24.00 and include the best available seats at every performance. Please visit the theater web site at www.tworiver.org or call (732) 345-1400.
Photo Credit: T. Charles Erickson