Sex, saints & gazpacho in new play
Actress and playwright Begonya Plaza wrote a one-woman show about the revered Spanish nun Saint Teresa of Avila and gave it to an actor friend to read. “There’s no conflict here,” he told her about the piece.
“I can’t find any,” Plaza said. “She’s perfect.”
But afterward Plaza phoned her estranged husband in Barcelona and told him that she was on her way there to research the mystic nun. She heard the disparaging sounds he made about St. Teresa and found her inspiration: “He’s my conflict.”
“So when I went to Barcelona, I listened to him, provoked him,” says the Colombian-born Plaza, 45, who lives in Chelsea. “When I came back I had another script.”
Though it’s by no means a direct transcript of her trip, elements of Plaza’s personal story and her now ex-husband served as an admitted model for “Teresa’s Ecstasy,” a sumptuous three-person comic drama about sex, love and spirituality onstage at the Cherry Lane Theatre.
Directed by Will Pomerantz and running until April 1, the play centers around Carlotta, played by Plaza, who travels to Barcelona to write a magazine article on St. Teresa, who was canonized in 1622. [more]