Family and morals conflict with love in “A View from the Bridge”
BY LAUREN LUKENS
Living in an apartment in 1955 on the bay, seaward from the Brooklyn Bridge, longshoreman Eddie Carbone resides happily with his wife, Beatrice, and their niece, Catherine. Unknowing what to expect, the family welcomes Beatrice’s two Sicilian immigrant cousins, Marco and Rodolpho, to illegally stay with them while the cousins work on the nearby pier for a few months.
“Having illegal immigrants come into your house that you’ve never known, a whole bunch of different conflicts arise,” said Ronya Mallad, University of Michigan student and Schoolcraft alum who plays Catherine.
While Marco sends every dime he earns back to his wife and children in Italy, Rodolpho has no attached strings and intends to stay around.
Because Eddie has no kids of his own, he is protective of 17-year-old Catherine and has never allowed her to go out freely with friends, especially not boys. When she and Rodolpho strike up a romance, Eddie shows his attachment to his niece and tries to keep them apart. After confessing their love and commitment to each other, Catherine and Rodolpho plan to get married, making Eddie outraged.
“I like to think the best part of the play is the chemistry between everyone in the show. I look at it as there is no real star in the show, but a strong ensemble cast,” said Mark Phillips, a Livonia resident who plays the role of Eddie. “I love the chemistry between Catherine and I. Even a few scenes between me and Rodolpho work tension-wise.”
Eddie seeks the help of his lawyer, Mrs. Alfieri, several times, but she stresses that there is nothing legally or morally that she can do for him. Frustrated, he calls the immigration bureau and reports both Marco and Rodolpho. After the bureau shows up at the apartment and arrests both men, they are relieved to be bailed out by an unsuspected acquaintance; the wedding is on.
“Catherine has compassion for Eddie, and in the end, I tell Eddie how wrong he is. Hopefully the audience can relate to that and understand that there are good parts about him and he does have good intentions, but he’s also selfish,” said Bridget Coletta, a Schoolcraft sophomore who plays the role of Mrs. Alfieri.
Still furious about the marriage, Eddie demands an apology from Marco and Rodolpho. An attention-grabbing, action-packed ending leaves the audience in awe.
“I like the ending. Everybody is on stage at the same time at that point. I guess you’ll have to see it to find out why,” said Director Jason Kallas.
This is Kallas’ second show as director for Schoolcraft College Theatre, but he has been involved in over ten shows with Professor James Hartman, the previous director, spanning more than 18 years.
“There were new elements because I’ve been a part of this show from the very beginning. Auditions were completely different this time because I got to actually pick the cast, versus the last show where the cast was pre-chosen. That added a new dimension to the decision-making process,” said Kallas.
Kallas, a 10-person cast and a four-women stage crew put their theatrical hearts and minds together to create an unforgettable reenactment of Arthur Miller’s tragedy,