NoHoArtsDistrict.Com Review “The Meatball Chronicles,”
“The Meatball Chronicles” is a one-woman show, but somehow, while watching the show I never felt that Debrianna Mansini was alone on stage. Debrianna filled the space with her story, she invited us into her fascinating life, and while we were there we were treated like family.
Debrianna’s memories revolve around food. Her childhood, spent with a mother who was colorful to say the least, was all about cooking with her sisters and trying to stay out of her mother’s way. The recipes that run through her veins were not always put there with love but they have shaped her. How many of us live like this, I know I do and perhaps it’s because of that intense feeling of familiarity that I was so moved by this play.
It’s a tough thing to do, to stand on a stage in front of friends and strangers and share the deepest and sometimes the darkest moments of your life, but telling these stories is what matters most in some ways. We need to share our life, our memories and our fears. It’s a very human urge and one that can help us heal and find some peace in difficult and hurtful memories.
It’s a kind of therapy really, this intimate way of sharing and, at its best, a solo show can be just as meaningful. “The Meatball Chronicles” is so artfully written and beautifully performed that the stories Debrianna shares, even the painful or shameful ones, are magical gifts to her audience. They promote healing and understanding in the way a late-night, sweet conversation with a best friend in a kitchen still overwhelmed by the delicious humming scents of the day can only do.
What Debrianna shares, her stories, her own healing and the lifelong journey spent finding her own limits and gifts, truly means something. Something to me, something to her audience and something to herself. I admit that there were more than a few tears, but also many, many warm smiles and big laughs. But I also I spent a little over an hour in a small theatre with strangers who cared as much as I did about Debrianna and her sisters, her mother and her life.
I highly recommend “The Meatball Chronicles.” Although I warn you, if you go hungry you will be ravenous by the time you leave. Book a table or pack a sandwich…just make sure it’s a meatball sandwich…and a very, very good one.