“It began in the pandemic,” says Gaetano Marangelli—and it led to critical acclaim, a successful run in Madrid and interest elsewhere around the world. The Milwaukee playwright’s one-person show, The Gardens, was performed outdoors in Milwaukee during the plague-ridden summer of 2020; it was accepted at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and received some 250 performances in English and Spanish in Milwaukee, Buenos Aires and Madrid. Spain’s second largest daily newspaper, El Mundo, called it one of the “plays you should not miss.”

The Gardens is the opening component of Marangelli’s Triptych. Part Two, Four Strangers, will receive its North American debut in Milwaukee this month. Marangelli describes it as a play “for one actor of any color, any gender and any age.” Four Strangers saw its world premiere in Madrid in October 2022 where it was performed as part of Triptych and was subsequently performed in Buenos Aires.

Marangelli directed the Madrid and Buenos Aires performances. The Milwaukee premiere will be directed by Marcella Kearns, associate director of Madison’s Forward Theater. She is well known to local audiences from her tenure as associate director for the Milwaukee Chamber Theatre. Marangelli will be the lone actor at Four Strangers’ Milwaukee debut.

Four Strangers is about an immigrant’s loss of identity,” he says. “Like each of the plays in TriptychFour Strangers speaks to themes of authenticity. The play asks us, ‘What does it mean to be yourself?’” It will be staged “simply, minimalistically. It’s one actor without a set or props.” He adds that this year, fully realized performances of Tryptych will be held in Spain, Norway and Northern Ireland.

Read the full article by David Luhrssen here.