Directing Thesis: The Sea Does not Reach Naples
Columbia University School of the Arts presents The Sea Does Not Reach Naples, a directing thesis production from current student Elena Vannoni.
The Sea Does Not Reach Naples is a play based on Anna Maria Ortese’s 1953 collection Il mare non bagna Napoli, a lively representation of everyday life in post-WWII Naples, Italy. In the building of the Granili – a grotesque emblem of Naples in the 50s, the writerly persona of Ortese guides us through a child’s experience of receiving her first pair of glasses, a woman’s inner struggle upon the life-altering return of her lost love, and a melancholic hope to hold together a family broken by the war. Traveling with Ortese in the inferno-esque reality of post-war Neapolitan society, we experience in each story the painful grace that evokes the cuore pensante (ever-thinking heart) within ourselves.
‘A Pair of Eyeglasses,’ ‘Family Interior,’ and ‘The Involuntary City’ are excerpted from NEAPOLITAN CHRONICLES by Anna Maria Ortese; copyright © 1994, Adelphi Edizioni, Milan; Translation Copyright © 2018 Ann Goldstein and Jenny McPhee, produced by arrangement with New Vessel Press.
Jason Ballew – DVINCENZO / GIOVANNINO / MAESTRO CUTOLO
Alyssa Commo – Understudy
Theodorus Aidan Elfaizy-Phillips – LUIGINO / EDORARDO / CLERK
Emma Harlow – MARCHESA / DORA / MAITRESSE
Francesca Litterio – ANTONIA LOSAUIO
Kelsey Malanowski – ROSA / SIGNORA F
Valerie O’Hara – AUNT NANA / ZAGRELLARA/NUNZIATA
Loredana Piedimonte – Italian Narration
Celeste Vandermillen – MARIUCCIA / ANASTASIA
Avery Withers – EUGENIA / ANNA
Sarah Maria Yannie – ORTESE
Mark Young – Pianist
Production Team & Crem
Director Elena Vannoni
Playwright | Dramaturg Siting Yang
Production Stage Manager Mia Qin
Assistant Stage Manager Jenna Coffey
Scenic & Prop Designer Jiaying Zhang
Associate Scenic Designer Oscar Escobedo
Costume Designer Karen Boyer
Lighting Designer Betsy Chester
Projection Designer Vivienne Shaw
Sound Designer Lucky Bommireddy
Assistant Director Qi Wang
Producer Michael Lee
Company Manager David O’Brien
General Manager Zhiwei Ma
Wardrobe Run Crew Emily Everett
Backstage Run Crew Sophie Mclntosh
Lighting Board Operator Colin Wulff
Prop Run Crew Milton Espinoza Jr.
Sound/Video Operator Yejia Sun
About the Director
Elena Vannoni is an experienced designer and director who has created work across the globe, with numerous productions in Florence, Rome, Berlin, and Los Angeles. She was a visiting professor at l’Universität der Künste in Berlin, and has earned degrees from the Istituto d’Arte (costume design), the Florence University of Literature and Philosophy (Music and Theatre), and Accademia Nazionale d’Arte Drammatica S. d’Amico (Theatre Directing). She was awarded Best Theatre Director in Italy’s 2005 M.I.U.R.: National Award of Arts for A Marriage Proposal by Anton Chekhov.
There is a limit of one (1) reservation per person and each reservation must be held in the name of the guest attending the event. Unfortunately, we are not able to accommodate late seating.