There's an unwritten rule that says only plays that have had a run in New York are awarded the Pulitzer Prize. So when word hit that a playwright from Little Havana with a story about Cuban cigar rollers from the tiny New Theatre in Coral Gables was in the running, all of the haterade-sipping theater snobs considered it a long shot. Well, Nilo Cruz proved them wrong and did our city proud, becoming the first Latino to win a Pulitzer forAnna in the Tropics
. This week, he'll debut his latest play,The Color of Desire
. "The chance to produce a new play by a Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright doesn't come that often," says Artistic Director David Arisco. "[When I read] an earlier version, I was instantly intrigued."
The funny and ultimately tragic tale takes places on the brink of change
in 1960's Havana. It explores the "lost love affair" between the United
States and Cuba by way of an American businessman who hires a young
Cuban actress to play the part of a woman he has loved and lost. An
array of characters that include the actress' aunts, an Italian-American
restaurant owner and his wealthy American lover, a young Communist, and
a nightlife emcee watch their lives change as the revolution begins.
The play was in development for four years, and Arisco and Cruz traveled
to New York, Cape Cod, and Miami to select the cast which includes
several TV actors alongside Actors' Playhouse veterans. Though Cruz's plays have traversed the country, it's obvious his heart remains
right here in the magical tropics that inspire his work.
The Color of Desire runs October 6th through November 7th at Actors'
Playhouse at the Miracle Theatre (280 Miracle Mile, Coral Gables).
Preview shows are Wednesday, October 6 and Thursday, October 7 at 8 p.m.
and tickets cost $37. For all other dates, shows are Wednesday through
Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m., and a matinee show
on Wednesday, October 13 at 2 p.m. Tickets cost $40 for weeknights and
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matinees, and $48 for Friday and Saturday evening shows. There is a 10%
discount for seniors and $15 student rush tickets the day of the
performance. Call 305-444-9293 or visit actorsplayhouse.org.