September 1st, 1939.

Hollywood, California.

The popular office of Mary Pickford.

So sets the scene for Oldcastle Theatre’s latest and greatest show: THE CONSUL, THE TRAMP & AMERICA’S SWEETHEART.

Travel back in time when the silent screen star and now founder of United Artists, Mary Pickford, meets with her dearest friend Charlie Chaplin. The Oldcastle Theatre makes the performances feel personal as if the audience is living the history in front of them. I didn’t feel like I was at a play, I felt like I was having a dream. This feeling, according to many locals and visitors, makes Oldcastle Theatre special and unique - the audience is literally 5 feet away from the play creating the illusion that you too are a part of the performance.

The new play by Morogiello is centered around the edge of the start of World War II. The German consul to Hollywood (played by Paul Romero) tries to stop production on Charlie Chaplin’s (David Joseph) first talkie The Great Dictator. The movie can only be stopped or processed by one last vote, a woman, the famous actress Mary Pickford (Elizabeth Aspenlieder). The result is an interesting take on true events in time, and the play takes an interesting perspective on how history, censorship and the role of women in leadership positions have so drastically changed over the last 70 years. The play is narrated by Pickford’s assistant, Miss Hollombe (Lori Vega).

This was my first ever play where I was able to enjoy it and relax by myself, and my first play at the Oldcastle Theatre. The four actors gave an outstanding performance in the roles that they portrayed. David Joseph and Lori Vega both oozed chemistry as Chaplin and Hollombe respectively. I was encapsulated by their stunning performances. For more than one reason this play is a must watch!

John Morgiello’s play won first place at the “Julie Harris Playwright Competition” in 2015 and also grabbed a first place finish at the Dayton Playhouse Futurefest. The Oldcastle Theatre has twice premiered plays (The Engaging Shaw, Playdate) by Morogiello. Both plays were then produced around the United States.

The performance runs from September 2nd - September 18th, with performance times from Wednesday-Sunday at 7:30 PM, Matinees are Thursday and Sundays at 2:30 PM. Tickets and more information can be found at Oldcastle’s website www.oldcastletheatre.org.