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The Pearl Theatre Company Presents "Figaro", Based on Beaumarchais' "Le Mariage de Figaro"
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The Pearl Theatre Company Presents "Figaro", Based on Beaumarchais' "Le Mariage de Figaro"

- Backstage with the Playwrights

Salon Ziba

200 West 57th Street
New York, NY
Open seven days a week
Ask for Alonso

The Pearl Theatre Company
J.R. Sullivan, Artistic Director
David Roberts, Managing Director

By Charles Morey

Adapted from Le Mariage de Figaro
By Beaumarchais

Directed by Hal Brooks

The Pearl Theatre
555 West 42nd Street
NY, NY 10036

Sean McNall, Jolly Abraham, Dan Daily
Robin Leslie Brown, Ben Charles, Chris Mixon
Brad Heberlee, Joey Parsons, Tiffany Villarin

Scenic Design: Jo Winiarski
Costume Design: Barbara A. Bell
Lighting Design: Stephen Petrilli
Sound Design: Jane Shaw
Dramaturg: Kate Farrington
Production Stage Manager: Dale Smallwood
Fight Director: Rod Kinter
Production Manager/Tech. Director: Gary Levinson
Cellist: Dave Eggar
Press: Blake Zidell & Associates

Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower
November 13, 2012

If I were ever to start from scratch to redecorate a fanciful living environment, I would bring Jo Winiarski onto the scene. Her shifting palace, garden, and judicial office scenes are created with bright vivid palettes that enhance the similarly brocaded costumes designed by Barbara Bell. The vibrancy and ebullience of the visual in Charles Morey’s Figaro, a new adaptation of Beaumarchais’ Le Mariage de Figaro, are well matched by the vibrancy and vividness of Hal Brooks’ direction of this Pearl Theatre production. Figaro (Sean McNall) and Suzanne (Jolly Abraham) are planning their wedding, with high drama. As this is farce, and The Pearl is exceptional in the genre, one must think of wedding planning out of the box that merges masked identities, whispered garden secrets, plumes and fans, adulterous liaisons, couches and curtains with faux concealment, and vaudevillian danger.

Rather than reveal the twists and turns of this adorable French farce, a focus on the impressive characterizations is in better order. Ms. Abraham, as maid Suzanne, is, as always, a magnetic figure with outsized exuberance and charm. She glimmers with glee, smooth as silk. Mr. McNall, as Figaro, has an exceptional, show-stopping monologue, in which he waxes political, erasing centuries of social discourse, sounding both courtly and contemporary, at once. Chris Mixon, as Count Almaviva, is riveting, with pasty white powder and blush, bumbling and blustering and lusting lasciviously. His crass neediness was high comic drama. Joey Parsons, as Countess Almaviva, was perfumy, flirty, fanning (literally), and teasing, as she wound each character around her well-kissed fingers.

Ben Charles, as both Cherubin and Doublemain, played each with youthful verve and pluck, even costumed in delightful drag. Tiffany Villarin, as Fanchette, was also adolescent and frivolous, fluttering about. Dan Daily, as Doctor Bartholo, had a steadier, determined persona, but his regal costume was just as outlandishly overdone as his cohorts. Brad Heberlee, in three roles, Bazile, Antonio, and Bridoison, was amazingly versatile as a rural farmhand, a stammering judge, and a courtly guard, as he even joked to the audience about his various roles. Robin Leslie Brown, as Marceline, was featured in a huge surprise ending scene. She filled her role with abundant grandiloquence. Mr. Brooks maximized each scene with endearing entertainment. Kudos to The Pearl Theatre Company, who performed in its new home on far West 42nd Street.

Sean McNall (Figaro) and Jolly Abraham (Suzanne)
in The Pearl Theatre Company's Figaro
Courtesy of Jacob J. Goldberg

Robin Leslie Brown (Marceline), Dan Daily (Doctor Bartholo),
Chris Mixon (Count Almaviva), Joey Parsons (Countess Almaviva)
Sean McNall (Figaro) in The Pearl Theatre Company's Figaro
Courtesy of Jacob J. Goldberg

For more information, contact Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower at