Written by Diana and Rosanna Savone - The Savone Sisters
Performed by Diana Savone
Directed and Developed by Jessica Lynn Johnson
As part of the brilliant Whitefire Theatre Solofest, this one woman, six-character play is honestly not at all what I expected… in a very, very good way.
With a title like “Italian AF” I was prepared for a light-hearted look at the American Italian condition, all pasta and sass, humor and Italian-American opinionated manoeuvring…and there is nothing at all wrong or bad with that. But this play is so much more.
Diana Savone is an Italian-American actress who has created a one-hour play to share with the world her six very different Italian and Italian-American characters. Each of these disparate characters tells their own very personal and very moving stories. The stories range from a child charming us with her sweet and funny world, where her dark curls and olive skin set her apart from the other kids in the playground, something I experienced myself. In another story an elderly Italian immigrant, in the middle of her garage sale, gives us a rare glimpse into a fascinating life, regaling us with tales of her family escaping the Nazis and the difficulties of building a life for herself in a strange land. Miss Italia hilariously shares her journey from rural Italy to America and her plans to change her life. A teenager in Argentina, her family settling there after the war, pines for love and aches for adventure. Another war story from Italy where a lonely wife loses a child and another from an Italian-American waitress with dreams of being an artist and a long list of reasons to stay very single.
Every single character is compelling, interesting and heartbreakingly real.
Ms Savone has created something poetic and evocative and she plays each character with a pureness and a truth that leaves one smiling, laughing and deeply touched.
The success of this play is that these stories seem real, they seem true and that is not just because of the skillful and brilliant writing and the deft and perceptive direction. It is also because of the beautiful performance by Ms Savone and the lightness and the humanity of her artistry. I still have those wonderful women rattling around in my mind…Brava! Brava!
I highly recommend “Italian AF.” Although, unfortunately, there is only one performance during the Solofest.