By Elizabeth Ann Foster
Can a woman rape a man? In many countries only men legally can commit this crime and be charged. Using a dildo to force penetration is not considered rape. How can this topic be the subject of a comedic play? The Pizza Man is a timely revival during the #metoo movement.
This is definitely a period piece – 1980’s. From the music played with vinyl records to the crochet afghan strewn across the sofa. The original comedy by Darlene Craviotto was published in 1986. Julie Rodgers (Stephanie LaVardera) has just been fired and has spent both her and her roomies share of rent money on alcohol to numb herself. She is off to a great start when her roommate Alice (Kate Adamy) comes home after being dumped by her boyfriend who has returned to his wife.
As Julie’s abusive history with men unfolds through act one coupled with Alice’s recent heartbreak you know these two are up to no good and not thinking clearly. They decide to extract revenge and act like the men that they perceive have wronged them and decide to rape someone. Let a man feel a women’s pain is the premise they devise. They go through Alice’s little black book (remember those along with rotary phones). Alice has been working for several years to fill in entries.A hysterical scene of picking a victim they will lure over to the apartment ensues.
All this work leads to two very hungry women who order a pizza. The pizza man Eddie (Karl Kopczynski) a Robert Redford look alike, enters. A tall strapping blond and ready to engage. Julie and Alice are angered when Eddie (who we learn is married), calls his boss to check in and let him know he will be delayed servicing customers. Evidently this behavior is common and he is told to deliver the pizzas in the truck first, and then he can entertain all he wants.
The girls aren’t having any of it refusing to let him leave. Eddie protests the pizzas will get “stiff’ which just encourages the girls to want to detain him even more.
There are some twists and turns and it is worth going to see how it all works out. Entertaining and thought provoking it makes for lively discussion afterwards. Kate Adamy needs to be more “Jewish”, more accent and neurosis is needed to make her character shine.
The entire 2019-2020 Art of Warr season is Dedicated to the Travis Samuel Waters and the Memorial Scholarship Fund in Potsdam NY in his name, all proceeds from concessions will be donated. Travis Waters 1980-2000 as the program states, “A brilliant and kind artist gone too soon…” died of a rare disease. His artwork is on display in the theater lobby so make sure you take time to view it. There is a whimsical piece of a frog that is not to be missed.
I enjoyed this production so much it prompted me to vote for it. The production is registered with the New York Innovative Theatre Awards which is specific for off-off-Broadway theatre. 25% of the votes come directly from audiences viewing productions www.nyitawards.com.
Pizza Man – Written by Darlene Craviotto.
With: Stephanie LaVardera (Julie Rodgers), Kate Adamy (Alice Meyerlink), Karl Kopczynski (Eddie).
Director, set design, sound design, props by Joshua Warr; costume design by Todd Trosclair; movement director Valentine Aprile; associate director Jenn Susi; intimacy coordinator Emily Edwards; fight director Dan O’Driscoll; production stage manager Marcella Pareda; lighting design Riley Cavanaugh. 13thStreet Theatre 50 West 13thStreet NY NY 10003 firstname.lastname@example.org. October 2-27, 2019. Tuesday and Sunday at 7 p.m. Saturday 2 p.m. Tickets $25.Two show weekend one ticket to each play Pizza Man and Stupid F**king Bird $40.Running time 1 hour 45 minutes with one 15-minute intermission.