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Sunday March 28, 2010 in Books
Sexy, provocative and challenging, Espresso is a rich, dark, bitter hit of comedy and sensuality. One of Lucia Frangione’s blasphemy plays,’ it inverts the Catholic stereotypes of feminine sexuality to boldly examine their corresponding masculine sexual emblems of Father, Son and Holy Ghost. In an erotic world where men are traditionally cast as either fathers to be looked up to or sons to be looked after, where, for women, is the possibility of a flesh-and-blood lover, challenging her to open her heart without trespassing her will—a lover as he appears in the Song of Solomon: passionate, earthy, creative, vulnerable and beautiful— the avatar of the holy spirit? There has been a horrible car crash, and Vito, the patriarch of an immigrant family, has had his body smashed and his heart lacerated, his life hanging by threads of tubes and wires in an intensive care ward. His family has rushed in from all over the country for an anxious vigil of hope, prayer and memory by his bedside. In this crucible of anxiety, a single actress alternately narrates and enacts her own and her family’s history along with an uninvited narrator/actor, Amante (“lover” in Italian). As Amante engages all the women of the clan Rosa plays in a swirl of sharply portrayed characters—Vito’s mother, Nonna, forced into marriage at thirteen but only now, at sixty-seven, experiencing the first intimations of her body’s desire; the pit-bull martyrdom of Vito’s second wife, Vincenza; and Rosa herself in her own thin, urbane skin stretched tight to hold in the red, passionate blood that boils just below the surface—we are never sure whether Rosa has created Amante or he has created her.
Cast of 1 woman and 1 man.
ISBN 13: 9780889224957 | ISBN 10: 889224951
6 W x 9 H inches | 96 pages
$16.95 CAN / $16.95 US
Backlist | Drama | Bisac: DRA013000
QUOTES OF NOTE
“Lucia Frangione’s Espresso is a pure, generous gift that reduced me to tears. It’s also one of the best arguments for Christianity I’ve encountered. … Vivid and compassionate in every character, [Frangione] delivers her story with the sincerity of an offering.”
– Georgia Straight
Finalist for the 2003 Jessie Richardson Award for Outstanding Original Play or Musical: Small Theatre (Pacific Theatre)
About the ContributorsLucia Frangione
Lucia Frangione is an internationally produced, award-winning playwright and actor residing in Vancouver. She has had twenty-eight plays produced, most recently including In a Blue Moon and Off Leash. She is published by Talonbooks and received training through Studio 58 and Rosebud School of the Arts.
We gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the Canada Council for the Arts; the Government of Canada through the Canada Book Fund (CBF); and the Province of British Columbia through the British Columbia Arts Council for our publishing activities.