I just saw Steven Haworth's exciting new play Fernando at the New Ohio Theatre's Ice Factory festival. Jamie Richards directs this psycho-sexual thriller with wit, class, and an appropriate level of sauciness.
The production greatly benefits from a remarkable cast of veteran actors. Christian Durso plays Zach, an American academic whose last chance at success (and tenure) is an article on the elusive Spanish painter Fernando de la Cruz, who disappeared a number of years ago without a trace.
While photographing Fernando's masterpiece, he meets Terese, played by the charismatic Vivia Font. Terese is interested in Zach, but perhaps just for what she can get from him. What does she want? Throughout the play we are unsure, but she keeps holding out tantalizing clues about Fernando. Could it be she was his model? His lover? His collaborator?
Rounding out the cast is Chris Ceraso, who appears as a mysterious blind man who may or may not be Fernando himself. While the actors keep us guessing, the audience never feels frustrated or cheated. In large part, that's due to the script's considerable humor, which the performers make come to life.
Fernando has only two performances left, so see it soon! The Ice Factory festival continues until August 12th, with new plays written by Melisa Tien, Nina Segal, and others. For more information, go to:
Ice Factory Festival