My Life with Men... and Other Animals offers an exhilaratingly intensive course on love, seduction, death and…olive oil! The production – in Italian and English – turns on its head the American concept of Italian romance and womanhood, demystifying archetypes created through movies and television and stars like Gina Lollabrigida, Anna Magnani, and Sophia Loren.
Maria Cassi explodes the myths drawing on her own past as well as a galaxy of fictional characters. And in their place evokes with the help of projections, photographs, and the occasional subtitle, a sexy and magical world half tethered to a piquant reality and half airborne in her own surreal, clown-like imagination.
Maria Cassi, the internationally acclaimed performance artist, makes her Spoleto Festival debut with the world premiere of My Life with Men – and Other Animals, which she has co-written with Patrick Pacheco. In a recent review, the French journal Le Monde hailed her as a “ clown without the red nose”, comparing her to such classic comics as Jerry Lewis, Charlie Chaplin, and Jacques Tati. Peter Schneider, the Tony Award–winning producer of the Broadway Musical The Lion King, makes his Spoleto Festival debut as the director of My Life with Men-and Other Animals. He recently directed the West End hit, Sister Act, the Musical, which he developed after leaving his position as Chairman of the Disney Film Studio. As President of its fabled animation division, he spearheaded such critically acclaimed features as Who Framed Roger Rabbit , The Little Mermaid, Aladdin, Beauty and the Beast and The Lion King, an era chronicled in the new documentary, Waking Sleeping Beauty which he produced. Patrick Pacheco is an award-winning New York journalist whose profiles have appeared in “The New York Times”, “The Los Angeles Times”, “The Wall Street Journal” and several other publications. He recently branched out into writing plays and screenplays, including his collaboration with Maria Cassi on My Life with Men—and Other Animals. He contributed to the creation of the Broadway musical, Chita Rivera: The Dancer’s Life and wrote the new documentary, Waking Sleeping Beauty
CREDITS MARIA CASSI in MY LIFE WITH MEN... AND OTHER ANIMALS
written by Patrick Pacheco and Maria Cassi
directed by Peter Schneider
musical direction James Edwards
set design Gianni Carluccio
costume design William Ivey Long
light design A.J. Weissbard
video design Valeria Palermo
with Maria Cassi
and Antonio Siringo at the piano
Produced by Change Performing Arts, Teatro del Sale and Red Shoes Entertainment
Executive Producer CRT Artificio