Getting married? Are you sure? What does marriage actually mean?
The Marriage Proposal, Anton Chekhov’s one-act comedy, forces us to think about relationships, while revealing the dynamics that shape our choices.
The play is an energetic whimsy, presenting three characters at the height of their selfishness and stubbornness: Stepan Chubokov, his daughter Natalia, and her suitor, Ivan.
Each hopes the marriage will occur, and yet everything they say and do imperils it, creating hilarious dramatic tension between intentions and actions. Disagreement alternates with reconciliation, enthusiasm with dismay, with the rhythm of the dialogue for accompaniment.
Chekhov himself referred to his one-act as a ‘scherzo.’ a fast-moving, humorous piece of music, and that is how I believe it should be staged, as a piece of music that crescendoes, blow by blow: who will come out on top? Is this a forecast of how wedded life will be?
The stage itself should beat with a scherzo’s energy—even the family portrait hanging in Mr. Chubokov living room should swing over the characters’ heads like a metronome, the pendulum of an inescapable clock, counting time to the end.
The song rises, then suddenly stops. Fortissimo piano. And in the quiet, we see ourselves, our fears and contradictions.
Elena Vannoni: Director
Alessia Patregnani: Producer
Clay Guilner: Producer/Assistent Director
Vicky D’Incecco: Assistent Costume Designer/Graphic Designer
Tony Gatto: STEPAN STEPANOVITCH CHUBUKOV
Meghan McGarry: NATALYA STEPANOVNA
Dustin Wilfert: IVAN VASILYEVITCH LOMOV