MY BIG GAY ITALIAN WEDDING

www.mybiggayitalianwedding.com

By ANTHONY J. WILKINSON

 

Theatre Four, 424 W. 55 St., NYC

Beginning November 7, 2003 (reviewed during the run at Actor's Playhouse, NYC)

At Theatre Four Mar. 19 - August 21, 2004

 

Directed by PETER RAPANARO

Musical Director ROBERT LEVULIS

Scenic Design JOHN KENNY

Lighting Design BOB BESSOIR

Costume Design CHRIS MARCH

Choreography JOSEPH RITSCH

Publicity SPIN CYCLE

 

Photo: Nigel Teare

 

Cast

Concetta Maria Aliotta – JC Alvarez – Michael Batelli

Vincent Briguccia – Meridith Cullen – Brett Douglas – Bill Fischer

Laura Gaspari – Joe Grimaldi – Melanie Mara – Carla-Marie Mercun

Kevin T. Moore – Maria Nazzaro – Rocco Parente – Yvonne Roen

Joe Scanio – Nick Scarnati – Anthony Wilkinson

As the weather in New York grows cold, what could warm hearts more than an Italian wedding complete with Brooklynese, big hair and big drama? How about an eccentric, escapist, from the heart play called MY BIG GAY ITALIAN WEDDING?

Photo: Nigel Teare

A venture that is intended to please out of pure silliness and fun, this is not the type of play one need pick apart for structural flaws and plot development issues. So, lets get right on to the meat of the matter – what this play is all about. In this most timely of theatrical happenings, Anthony Pinnunziato (played by playwright Anthony Wilkinson) has proposed to Andrew Polinski (Bill Fischer), and Andrew has accepted. Being from an Italian family, Anthony finds that he must have a big, traditional wedding. Mom and Pop Pinnunziato (Maria Nazzaro, Joe Scanio), having accepted Anthony’s sexuality, are not ready to walk him down the aisle unless a few conditions are met. Mom wants the local Catholic priest to perform the service, and for Andrew’s mother to come up from Florida to give her blessing in person. Those are just the first two plot complications in MY BIG GAY ITALIAN WEDDING. We also meet Anthony’s "Broadway star" sister, bickering lesbians who used to date, a jilted gigolo who wants nothing more than to spoil the nuptials, a local guy in search of a date, the best friend known for bathroom blow jobs and an over-the-top wedding planner.

Photo: Nigel TeareIn the course of the unfolding of the marital events in MY BIG GAY ITALIAN WEDDING, there are many bumps and many laughs along the way. There are fists of fury, outright lies, betrayals, some truly outrageous fashions (courtesy of costume designer Chris March), some even more outrageous singing, and a number of genuinely punchy one-liners.

In the end, MY BIG GAY ITALIAN WEDDING is just the giddy romp one would expect. It is not brilliant theater, but reasonable, escapist entertainment, and couldn’t we all use a bit of that every now and then?

- Kessa De Santis -

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