Off-Broadway Recommendation: VATICAN FALLS (The Tank)

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by Gregory Bernard on September 28, 2022

in Theater-New York


Vatican Falls, the controversial play written by Frank J. Avella that closely examines the Catholic sex abuse scandal while telling real survivor stories and exploring the fictional journey of one particular survivor will make its world premiere this Fall in a limited engagement run Off-Broadway.

The cast features Ace Young (Broadway’s HAIR , GREASE as well as, of course, AMERICAN IDOL season 5 Top 10), Carlotta Brentan (Lured), Tucker Aust (Moonchildren), Alice Barrett Mitchell (Heels) with James Gracia, Danny Hilt, Kenon Veno, Edward L. Simon, Ryan Wright and Jacopo Constantini.

James Gracia and Ace Young

Vatican Falls has had 7 world premieres canceled in 4 different countries in the last decade, most notoriously in Rome, Italy in 2011 at Teatro Vascello, when the plug was pulled on the show by fearful producers the night before opening amidst controversy and claims of death threats.

Ace Young and Carlotta Brentan

Based on factual accounts, spanning decades and set against the backdrop of the continuously swelling Catholic sex abuse scandal, Vatican Falls is a sweeping multi-genre work that follows survivor journeys examining the feelings of shame and confusion that ultimately turn to anger and revenge. This fast-paced, non-linear suspense-thriller jets from Boston to Rome to New York to Los Angeles as our radicalized protagonist falls in love with a Vatican operative and, along with his Fellowship, plots vengeance on the institutional power players that allowed the rape and torture of countless children and young adults. The play features three prominent LGBTQ+ characters including the fellowship leader, Vi, a proud queer whose desire for retribution fuels the group.

James Gracia and Alice Barrett-Mitchell

The play will be co-directed by Avella and Carlotta Brentan (Lured) and is a High Voltage co-production with The Tank. Set and Projection Design is by Tony DiBernardo. Lighting Design is by David Shocket. Costume design is by Shirlee Idzakovich. Sound Design by Zëk Stewart. Publicity is by Daniel DeMello / DDPR, Casting by Judy Bowman. Social Media will be managed by John David West. The Stage Manager is Elena Jenson.

Tucker Aust

photos by Ashley Garrett

Vatican Falls
High Voltage Productions
The Tank, 312 West 36th Street
October 27 thru November 20, 2022
Thurs-Sun at 7 (11/5, 11/12 & 11/19 will be at 3)
for tickets ($25-$50), visit OvationTix

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