John Stark Presents O'Neill's Ghosts by Jovanka Bach
TBG Theatre • 312 W. 36th Street• New York
Smarttix.com • (212) 868-5252 • Limited Engagement
Opening March 5, 2015 8PM
Selected scenes from O'Neill's Ghosts
"...Skillfully directed by John Stark."
"Carlotta, who is played with great style and intensity by Lisa Thayer, is overly protective of O’Neill ... superbly played by John DiFusco..."
"Mona Lee Wylde as the ghost of Ella... is riveting to watch as she alternates between drug induced dementia and honest love for her family."
"...Absolutely compelling in its pacing and performance"
- Joe Regan Jr. Theater Pizzazz
"Bravo to John DiFusco for going balls out in his unapologetic, unflinchingly unsympathetic portrayal of the genius playwright Eugene O'Neill. No room for niceties for DiFusco's O'Neill, except for the few times he's manipulating his wife to do his bidding. Bach writes Eugene O'Neill as tunnel-vision on his works, with not even his family ever taking priority."
- Gil Kaan BroadwayWorld Reviews
O'Neill's Ghosts, written by award-winning playwright Jovanka Bach, is told from the tormented perspective of Eugene O'Neill as he struggles with his latest writing while being haunted by the ghosts of his alcoholic-suicidal son, Bud; his career-plagued father, James; his dope-fiend mother, Ella; and debauched older brother Jamie. O'Neill suffers pangs of conscience while ravaging his family's troubled history as plot fodder for his many plays, but it doesn't stop him from pushing the pen.
The drama is set in 1912, in a coastal Connecticut home. As O'Neill arduously tries to concentrate on his latest work, he is haunted by the years of paternal neglect toward his eldest son, Eugene O'Neill Jr. (Bud). This relationship is reminiscent of the interactions with his own father James, mother Ella and brother Jamie. In the meanwhile, his long-suffering but dutiful wife, Carlotta struggles to uphold his privacy. The interruptions include a series of frantic calls from the family attorney concerning Eugene's son Bud and Carlotta's overwrought concern for their ailing dog. From her own perspective, the family's surly Irish maid, Maude, grows even more disgusted as she tries to make sense of the family's dysfunction.
Sadly neither O'Neill's father, his mother, nor his brother can impress upon him enough to change the way he interacts with his own son, Bud. The more he tries to impress his father, the more Bud's spirit deteriorates as it becomes evident that his father will never take the time from his calling to accept him into his world. And, just as O'Neill seems to have an epiphany, it is all too late as Bud takes his own life. But, the show must go on as they say, and O'Neill continues to bury himself in his work.
Featured as Eugene O'Neill is John DiFusco, with a supporting cast of Dana Kelly, Michael Vaccaro, Lisa Thayer, Penny Orloff, Tom Groenwald and Tanya Starcevich.
The production is designed by Jaret Sacrey, with lighting and sound by Kent Inasy and stage management by Joe Morrissey. Poster designs by Lara Starcevich.