Review: SONIA and ALFRED

by Lynn on May 19, 2024

in The Passionate Playgoer

Live and in person at the Alumnae Theatre, 70 Berkeley St. Toronto, Ont. Produced by the Wee Festival, Teatro Gioco Vita (Italy). Plays May 19 at 11 am and 2 pm.

For children 4+

Performances are in English

Theatrical adaptation by Enrica Carini & Fabrizio Montecchi

Based on the story and illustration in the children’s books by Catherine Pineur

Direction and set by Fabrizio Montecchi

Shadow puppets by Nicoletta Garioni and Federica Ferrari

Music by Paolo Codognola

Costumes by Rosa Mariotti

Lighting by Anna Adorno

Cast: Deniz Ashar Azari

Andrea Coppone

A wonderfully moving story and production about friendship, belonging and home.

Alfred (Andrea Coppone) is a bird who was forced to leave his home and seek refuge elsewhere. He carries a small red chair on his back as a reminder of home. None of the birds on his journey will welcome him or give him shelter. One day he comes to Sonia’s (Deniz Azhar Azari) house on the edge of a forest and she makes him feel welcome and offers him a cup of coffee. Alfred feels safe in Sonia’s company. They become friends. One day that friendship is tested. Will Sonia rise to the challenge?

Fabrizio Montecchi has directed a tender, inventive production using shadow puppets and theatricality. Andrea Coppone as Alfred and Deniz Azhar Azari as Sonia are vibrant, sensitive actors. Sonia gives Alfred a book—she holds it out to him like a treasure. He is beaming with pleasure. He opens it and takes time to read the inscription, then seems to melt in emotion. Alfred gives Sonia a treasured stone his his pocket. He puts it in her outstretched hand and then carefully folds the fingers over the stone. He puts his hand on Sonia’s and she puts her other hand on his. It’s a gesture of such enfolding friendship that one is moved to moist eyes.  

Plays at the Alumnae Theatre 70 Berkeley St. Toronto, Ont.

Until Sunday May 19 at 11 am and 2:00 pm.

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