Hurry to see “Made in Italy,” an Arts Club comedy that runs for only a month on the theatre company’s Granville Island Stage in Vancouver, until April 17.
Farren Timoteo’s hilarious one-man show is a coming-of-age musical that offers myriad laughs about family, food, music and the life of Italian immigrants in rural Jasper, Alberta.
The ultra-talented Timoteo plays multiple roles, including patriarch Salvatore Mantini and his teen son, Francesco, who struggles as a 1970s-era outsider in high school. Inspired by the “Rocky” movie character, the disco sounds of “Saturday Night Fever” and an encounter with an Italian lady of the night, he finds his voice as a club-going singer who attempts to hit the big time on television, as Frank Martin.
The Salvatore character is at the heart of the play, with his love of food and dining, never-ending bad jokes, stretching the truth of his journey to Canada by boat, and scolding his son for not living up to his great expectations.
With elastic energy and quick-change artistry, Timoteo also plays various family relatives in the musical, dances up a storm on the family dinner table, and had Wednesday’s opening-night audience giggling with jokes that will especially hit with children of immigrant families.
Ultimately, the musical offers a heartwarming story of a father and son finding themselves despite their differences.
Commissioned by Western Canada Theatre, “Made In Italy” debuted in 2016 and recently played Hamilton’s Theatre Aquarius. In Vancouver, the show was postponed from earlier this year, due to COVID-19.
Tickets start at $35 for the run on the Granville Island Stage. For show times and other details, visit artsclub.com. Special show dates include Sunday Salon (March 27, 2 p.m.), Tuesday Talkback (April 5, 7:30 p.m.) and VocalEye Performance (April 10, 2 p.m.).
In addition to Timoteo, the show’s creative team includes Daryl Cloran (Director), Rachel Peake (Associate Director), Laura Krewski (Original Choreographer), Cory Sincennes (Set Designer), Cindy Wiebe (Costume Designer), Conor Moore (Lighting Designer), Mishelle Cuttler (Sound Designer), Celeste English (Associate Lighting Designer), Christine Leroux (Stage Manager) and Jessica Bournival (Apprentice Stage Manager).