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In Artword Theatre main theatre, weekends only from Mar 1 to 24, 2002


Written and performed by: Charly Chiarelli
Directed by: Ronald Weihs
Produced by: Artword Theatre
Set design by: Judith Sandiford

Show Times and Prices:
Friday and Saturday at 8:30 pm: $27 reg., $22 students/seniors $15 children
Saturday Family Matinée at 4 pm: $15 reg., $12 students/seniors $8 children
Sunday Matinée at 3:30 pm: $22 reg., $17 students/seniors $10 children
Tickets: Advance ticket reservations through the St. Lawrence Centre Ticket Line, 416-366-7723,
Artword Theatre opens for ticket sales and pickup one hour and a half BEFORE A SHOW only
GENERAL SEATING (no allocated seats this time)

Charly Chiarelli’s Mangiacake! returns to Artword

Mangiacake!, Charly Chiarelli’s second hit show about growing up Sicilian in Canada, is coming back to Artword Theatre for four weeks, from March 1 to 24. Its first run last April was completely sold out, and ever since Artword has been getting phone calls asking "when is Charly coming back?" This is truly a return engagement "by popular demand".
Mangiacake! is the second installment in the autobiographical saga that began with Cu’Fu. ("Cu’Fu" means "who did it?" in Sicilian.) A runaway hit, Cu’Fu has played all over Canada in more than a hundred venues from Whitehorse to Halifax. A one-hour television version is a perennial favorite on Bravo!.
Mangiacake! picks up where the earlier play left off -- with young Charly entering high school. Born in Sicily, raised in the industrial north end of Hamilton with 10,000 other Sicilian immigrants, and burdened with the ultimate Sicilian name, "Calogero", young Charly decides that the road to success in Canada is assimilation. He decides to become a "mangiacake". ("Mangiacake" is what Italian immigrants call non-Italians, who eat pasty white sliced bread that looks like cake).
He goes to a "white-bread" high school outside the neighbourhood, and does his best to blend in – with mixed results. Like many immigrants, he is steered into the four-year technical program, but he ends up running for president of the student council anyway (his slogan – "put a wop on top!")
As an adult, he goes back to Sicily, where he finds out what a mangiacake he has become. Sicily is a strange, magical land. His relatives are like characters out of myth. Strangest of all is his namesake, Uncle Calogero, who lives alone with a donkey called America, and who makes him a gift that has some far-reaching consequences.
Some of the Mangiacake! stories are hilarious. Others deal with tough subjects with a clear and forthright honesty — the brutal aspects of growing up as a newcomer to Canada, and Charly’s own fight with cancer. Amazingly, Charly shows how both subjects have their funny side. And, as before, the show is punctuated with Charly’s own brand of Sicilian blues and some very fine blues harmonica.
Like Charly’s first play, Mangiacake! originates in stories honed and polished in kitchens and at parties over the years. Charly Chiarelli began his career as a performer playing virtuoso harmonica in blues and jazz bands. Invited to participate in Artword’s first Festival of the Human Voice in 1995, Charly put some of the stories together into Cu’Fu?. Artword’s Artistic Director Ronald Weihs helped Charly to evolve both pieces, and to find a style combining storytelling and theatre.

For media and publicity information call Josée Duranleau, Duranleau Publicity, 416-652-7672.