David Cale
David Cale
Paula Court

Stage Solo

Alone on a stage, without props, just a microphone to speak in, a stool to sit on, playing a slew of characters. Monologist/lyricist/writer/actor David Cale wouldn't have it any other way. The British expatriate, who has penned and starred in six one-man shows, including the Obie Award-winning Lillian, readily admits that acting in ensemble casts discomfits him a bit. "That's much more straightforward for me -- to just kind of do it all myself," he says, wondering aloud if he's a control freak. "I find it personally more complicated to work with other people in the sense that I'm always concerned that everybody is okay. So it's kind of a relief to be alone sometimes."

This Thursday evening, when Cale delivers the final performance in the One and Only series presented by Miami-Dade Community College's Cultura del Lobo, he will be alone, but he certainly won't be lonely. His show The History of Kisses, a compilation of many of his favorite pieces, some never before seen, features thirteen different characters, including one he's particularly fond of: a scruffy self-destructive country singer who lives out of his car. "Some of it's completely made up," he notes about the inspiration for his creations. "Some is riffing on autobiography but extending it and mixing it up with fiction. Other times it's people I've met and things I've heard."

What Cale listens to has always been important. His songs have been recorded by the Jazz Passengers, Freedy Johnston, and Syd Straw. So it's only natural he'd compare his performance art to music. "It's almost like a concert of monologues in a funny way," he says about History. "I've always thought of the shows like albums." More sounds seem destined for him in the future. In the fall he'll collaborate with Straw on a two-person production. "It's going to be going in a much more musical direction," he speculates about his career. "I have no idea where that will ultimately lead, but it's off somewhere and I'm just kind of tagging behind it."


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