Arts & Entertainment

Sopranos Regular Funaro to Star in "Burn This" at Mondo Feb. 7

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Ralph Funaro will star in Landon Wison's "Burn This" at MONDO February 7.
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SUMMIT, NJ - The Lanford Wilson play reading series will present “Burn This”, on February 7 at MONDO.

The play reading will star Robert Funaro who is best known for the role of Eugene Pontecorvo in the Emmy Award-winning television series The Sopranos.  His most notable episode on The Sopranos, titled "Members Only", won an Emmy award.  Funaro also guest-starred in multiple television series, such as Blue Bloods, Unforgettable, and multiple episodes of Law and Order.  He is currently working on the movie "Charlie Mantle", which be released in 2014.  The cast will also consists of local actors who have performed at The Summit Playhouse and/or The Chatham Community Players, including Miriam Salerno, Dale Monroe, Scott Tyler, and Theresa Turner. 

Like many of Wilson's plays, “Burn This” deals with themes of gay identity and relationships.  The place is a Manhattan loft shared by Anna, a lithe young dancer-choreographer, and her two gay roommates: her collaborator, Robby, who has just been killed in a freak boating accident, and Larry, a world-weary, caustically funny young advertising executive.  As the play begins Anna is recovering from attending Robby's funeral, comforted by her wealthy, well-meaning boyfriend, Burton, a sci-fi screenwriter whose persistent proposals of marriage Anna finds herself unable to accept.  Then, with sudden, unexpected explosiveness, Robby's older brother, Pale, bursts on the scene.  He has come to collect his brother's belongings, but stays on to transform the action of the play and the lives of those in it. Menacing, profane, dangerous and yet oddly sensitive, Pale is both terrifying and fascinating and, in the end, the one who brings to Anna the unsettling but compelling love that, despite her fears and doubts, she cannot turn away.

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The Lanford Wilson Play Reading Series will be directed by Frank Licato.  Licato has been a professional director, actor, and teacher for more than 30 years.  He is Artistic Director of Hudson Theatre Works, a professional theatre in Hudson County, NJ.  His shows have been nominated for 17 Perry awards and he won for best director for "Grapes of Wrath'.  Licato was honored by the New Jersey Theater Alliance for his directorial work, was named best director at the New York Fringe Festival, and Best Director by the Off-Off Broadway Review.  He has acted in movies with Alan Arkin, Martin Sheen, Sylvester Stallone, and Frank Sinatra.   Licato He was named best actor by the Boston Critics for his performance in "Judgement" by Barry Collins at the Boston Shakespeare Company, and was nominated for an Obie award for his performance in "Deathwatch" by Genet.

To purchase tickets for the performance, which will begin at 8 p.m., contact SallyPonzio@aol.comor by calling 941 / 993-3195.  Seating for the show is limited.

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