Rivera's Boleros for the Disenchanted Makes Bay Area Debut at A.C.T. May 7

News   Rivera's Boleros for the Disenchanted Makes Bay Area Debut at A.C.T. May 7 American Conservatory Theater will present Jose Rivera's Boleros for the Disenchanted, from the Academy Award-nominated screenwriter of "The Motorcycle Diaries," May 7-31 in San Francisco.

Artistic director Carey Perloff directs the play by OBIE Award winner Rivera (Brainpeople, Marisol), who "explores the ineffable dreams of lovers in the first act set in an exuberant Puerto Rican village in 1953, when a young woman's search for true love takes an unexpected course." Act Two jumps "almost 40 years later in America," probing "the darker truths of marriage — all while reverberating with the gorgeous sounds of Latin love songs, or boleros," according to A.C.T.

Opening night at the Geary Theatre is May 13.

According to A.C.T., Rivera found his inspiration for his award-winning new play close to home — in the marriage of his parents. He said, "The idea of Boleros is to examine a long-term relationship and how the love you feel for somebody is severely tested when life throws obstacles and tragedies in your way.

"I literally thought about this play for 10 years, wondered about it, and daydreamed about it — but I didn't write a word until two years ago. Almost all of my work is inspired by something deeply personal, coupled with the larger social and political forces around me. Writing about Puerto Rico was liberating because I was born in Puerto Rico but I left the island when I was four years old."

The aged couple in the second act of the play is played by veterans of film, television, and theatre Robert Beltran and Rachel Ticotin. Acclaimed television and theatre actor Beltran ("Big Love," "Star Trek: Voyager," East L.A. Classic Theater Group) takes on the double roles of the older Eusebio in the second act and Flora's father, Don Fermin, in the first. Ticotin (Broadway's Macbeth) plays Older Flora in the second act and Flora's mother, Dona Milla, in the first. The young couple in the 1950s is played by newcomers Drew Cortese and Lela Loren making their Bay Area debut. The cast also includes Dion Mucciacito and Michele Vazquez, playing a series of family members and friends of the couple over their 40-year relationship. The creative team includes Fabian Obispo (sound designer), Ralph Funicello (scenic designer), Nancy Schertler (lighting designer) and Sandra Woodall (costume designer). For more information call (415) 749-2228 or visit www.act-sf.org.