The Sons of Don Juan


The Sons of Don Juan

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San Jose News Article

  Fan Reviews                Fan Photos   3/30/00

January 29 – February 27, 2000

San Jose Repertory Theater

Sons of Don Juan

by John PiRoman

Directed by Amy Gonzalez

Performances ran January 29 through February 27, 2000

An exuberant comedy about chasing the American dream. Cuban mmigrant, lover and hair dresser extraordinaire, Guillermo Giliano (Guille) runs a New Jersey beauty salon and moonlights as a singer with dreams of owning his own nightclub.

Playing off the stereotypes of Latin machismo, Guille and his friends engage in a series of hilarious exploits – from dodging gangsters to numerous close encounters of a Cuban kind – as they each grab for their slice of the American pie.

Teeming with adoring and adored women, Sons of Don Juan includes Guille’s lovely duet partner Blanca; the sweet, blond and divorced coloratura soprano Meredith; and Lila Luz, famous journalist and lady in lilac who searches relentlessly for her ‘Latin American, American Man, Today’. Sons of Don Juan is a sexy and spicy blend of salsa, pina coladas, dippity-do and fabulous music.

ROBERT CUCCIOLI stars as the charismatic and suave Guille. Cuccioli earned a 1997 Tony Award nomination, a Drama Desk Award and an Outer Critics Circle Award for his performance in the title role of Jekyll & Hyde on Broadway. He made his Broadway debut as Javert in Les Miserables and boasts an impressive list of Off-Broadway credits. His feature films include Woody Allen’s Celebrity and The Stranger. Television credits include Sliders, Baywatch, All My Children, and One Life to Live.

The dramatic and beautiful Blanca is played by Christine Avila. A member of the original cast of Zoot Suit at Mark Taper Forum, Avila most recently appeared at South Coast Repertory in Posada Magica and Commond Ground Festival in Maruichi Quixote.

WASP-ish soprano, Meredith Sharp, is played by Erica Schroeder. Most recently seen in North Shore Music Theater's production of Grease, Schroeder's credits include work at The York Theater Company, The Actor's Studio, The Cleveland Play House. The McCarter Theater and The Helen Hayes Performing Arts Center.

Playing popular TV talk show hostess, Lila Luz is Mari-Esther Magaloni. Magaloni appeared in Wit at the St. Louis Rep and Off-Broadway in After the Rain. She recently made her television debut in Law & Order and her stand-up debut fat Caroline's Comedy Club.

Colman Domingo is playing handsome handyman, Fernandito Fonseca. He has appeared at Shakespeare Santa Cruz, Berkeley Repertory Theater, TheaterWorks, San Francisco Shakespeare Festival and Thick Description. He has a recurring role on television's Nash Bridges.

Playing Iggy, an ex-con with a heart of gold is Gendell Hernandez. Hernandez arrived in the U.S. from his native Cuba in 1985 at the age of 10. He has been performing in the Bay Area for four years. Present projects include work on "Heatbox: A Raparetta (workshopped at the New American Playwright's Festival in 1998), Felonious (a hip-hop band) and The Cuban-American Cultural Institute's Festival 2000.

Billy Philadelphia, musical director, plays Puerto Rican piano player, Otto Barnet. A musical director for several Bay Area television shows, Philadelphia last appeared on stage at the Rep in The 1940s Radio Hours.

Julian Lopez rounds out the cast as a Distinguished Looking Man. His Rep credits include the roles of Death of a Salesman, Room Service, The Seagull and directing credits for The School for Scandal and The Servant of Two Masters.

Sons of Don Juan is co-sponsored by the San Jose Mercury News, Pacific Hotel, Adaptec and TradeWorld, Media Sponsor is KICU-TV Channel 36. Sons of Don Juan is produced in partnership with Telemundo, Channel 48.

"What is the American dream - success, fame or fortune? And does achieving this outward material success make you a man?" ask director Amy Gonzalez. "In Sons of Don Juan, Guille finds that being himself and loving truly and honestly defines that dream." Gonzalez continues, "Sons of Don Juan has tremendous vitality and energy. The characters are portrayed as larger than life, with passion bigger than life. Within the context of the play, that makes for a seductive, outrageous and adventurous comedy."

Playwright John PiRoman arrived in the United States some thirty-eight years ago with his parents in the first wave of refugees from Castro's Cuba. PiRoman is a television, film and theater writer. Other works for the stage include All My Children (ABC), How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents (PBS "American Playhouse"), and Happily After (HBO).

Amy Gonzales has directed numerous California productions including Psychopathia Sexualis, Moon Over Buffalo, Voir Dire and Our Lady of the Tortilla at TheaterWorks, The True History of Coca-Cola in Mexico at San Diego Repertory Theater, El Fin del Mundo and Simply Maria at the El Teatro Camposino.

Eric E. Sinkkonen is the set designer for Sons of Don Juan. Costumes are designed by Meg Nelville and the lighting design is by Derek Duarte (Over the Tavern, Communicating Doors, Legacy, Three Days of Rain, The Game of Love and Chance, Nixon's Nixon among others). Sound design is by the Rep's Resident Sound Designer, Jef Mockus

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