The Whitefire Theatre, Solofest Presents: Shattered
Written and Performed by Diana Varco
Directed by Jessica Lynn Johnson
Diana Varco has taken a terrible and sadly all too common event in life… rape…and transformed it into this powerful, inspiring, funny and profoundly touching play.
“Shattered” recounts the story of Diana’s journey through the trauma of sexual assault. Her recovery is still ongoing of course, the rebuilding of herself and her life, but Diana has the strength and indeed the sheer nerve to construct a performance from the worst moments in her life, to heal herself and to show us all that something good can come from something evil.
And what a performance this is, truly epic.
Diana plays over 35 characters, some real and some manifestations of her self. Her shame, her fear, her panic and her security are just some of the incredibly defined and highly personal pieces of her “shattered” personality that posses her on stage. Each of them, with profundity and grace and humor, reach out to us to share her struggle, to unburden and release her darker emotions in ways so effective that it has one holding one’s breath with awe. I honestly cannot remember being so deeply moved by a performance. Diana’s play manages to inform, connect and heal. She is absolutely hilarious and a brilliant comic actor. She manipulates her face and body into unrecognizable characters, morphing moment to moment magically and magnificently with barely a breath between.
I can totally appreciate and applaud this brilliant creation, a way of informing her experience. She ruthlessly exorcises her demons on stage and I can only tell you that this beautiful soul has completely blown me away. I cannot imagine how it must feel to be destroyed by rape, I have never experienced it myself, but I know so many people who have and need to find support and their own way of recovery. I will absolutely tell them to see Diana Varco’s show…and that is a very big recommendation indeed.
Yes, this play is about trauma, but it is also about triumph. A triumph of spirit, a long-fought victory over fear and the courage to share a story in the hopes that it will help heal us all.