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And now a word from our director, Patrick Torres…

October 4, 2009

I cannot express how exciting it has been to start rehearsals for We Won’t Pay! We Won’t Pay! The play’s characters and themes have been swimming around in my head from the first time I read it over six years ago. It is the kind of play that I am most drawn to…a play that uses humor and satire to challenge us to take a stand together to fight injustice in the world and recognize our own strength. But until our first rehearsal on Tuesday night, the power and potential of the play was only a hunch because before then, I had never heard the play read aloud. Since Helen and Maggie asked me to direct last year, I have done mountains of research…about Dario Fo, Italy in the 1970s, Commedia dell’Arte, the reforms set in place by Vatican II ( I wanted to make sure I understood all the Pope Jokes)…and that research certainly supported my notion that this play is important. Then, we had our first read through on Tuesday. The power of the play was no longer a theory, but a truth. The script came to life when the cast read through it…it existed in the space around us and the characters spoke loudly. The play is funny. The play is biting. The play asks to take a stand. Those were all things the years of reading the play and the research told me. What the research couldn’t touch was the feeling in the room that the play is a truly a story about us at this time. There were so many moments in the play that seemed so familiar because of the stories we are reading in the newspaper, the friends and family we know that have been laid off, and the feeling that some have so much while many have so little. It is the right time for this play. It is certainly the right company of actors and the right theatre to bring it to life.
I am so excited about this process and look forward to more weeks of standing in admiration of Dario Fo!

-Patrick Torres

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