The 2003 New York International Fringe Festival

Present Tense Productions
by Timothy Nolan

The Play Room
440 Lafayette Street (between Astor Place and E. 4 St.), NYC
Tickets: (212) 279-4499 (NY) or (888) FringeNYC (Outside NY) or

Sunday, August 10 @ 12:00 PM, Monday, August 11 @ 6:45 PM
Wednesday, August 13 @ 9:00 PM, Friday, August 15 @ 8:30 PM
Saturday, August 16 @ 1:30 PM, Tuesday, August 19 @ 5:30 PM
Wednesday, August 20 @ 12:30 PM, Friday, August 22 @ 7:30 PM

Directed by Vincent Marano
Producer -- Susannah Nolan
Production Stage Manager/Assistant Director Joseph Renga
Publicist -- Parenteau Guidance: Gail Parenteau, Penny Landau
Scenic Design -- Eric Everett
Lighting Design -- Vincent Marano
Graphic Designer -- Chandra Hira
Photographer -- Jessica Ochs
Costume Design -- Rosalind Loo
Sound Design -- Santino (Sonny) Walkman

(In order of appearance)

The Cardinal -- GENE FANNING

Three young maverick priests meet at a summer beach house for vacation each year.  This year, their Cardinal has mysteriously sent the "star" among them away.  When he finally shows up at the beach house, it quickly becomes clear that he has been a part of a horrible cover-up, orchestrated by the Cardinal himself.  Friendship, the seal of the confessional and faith itself are all challenged and souls are put to the test in Timothy Nolan's ACTS OF CONTRITION.

Well-written and evenly told, ACTS OF CONTRITION is thought-provoking and engaging, and filled with strong opinions while never being heavy-handed.  Nolan's play is intelligent and exceptional, and the cast only
enhances it.  As Steve, the "star" priest implicated in a child-molestation scandal, Shiek Mahmud-Bey is magnetic and his performance riveting.  James M. Armstrong, as the burly, tough-talking Tom, and Mark Gorman, as the sensitive, conscience-laden Joe, are perfectly cast and complementary foils for Mahmud-Bey. Rounding out the cast, Gene Fanning is strong as the Cardinal, looming over the events of the play with
tradition-heavy stoicism and a sometimes almost sinister presence.

While it was written in 1993, ACTS OF CONTRITION is as relevant now as ever.  ACTS OF CONTRITION is good theatre. It is timely and timeless, and it does what good theatre does best. It questions and asks its audience to question and, more importantly, to find the answers themselves.

-- Kate Kolendo --

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