Philadelphia Artists' Collective performs 'Children of the Sun' at the Bluver Theatre, May 2-19

BySteph Walton WPVI logo
Monday, May 6, 2024
Philadelphia Artists' Collective stages Children of the Sun, May 2-19
The Philadelphia Artists' Collective is performing a tragic comedy, Children of the Sun, that will take you from laughter to heartbreak.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- 'Children of the Sun' is an adaptation of a play written by Maxim Gorky.

"It's about human connection and how important that is," says Damon Bonetti, Producing Artistic Director of Philadelphia Artists' Collective. He also plays the role of Boris in the show.

Philadelphia Artists' Collective is staging the Philadelphia premiere of the work at the Bluver Theatre at the Drake.

"Andrew Upton's adaptation is remarkably contemporary," says director Megan Bellwoar. "This is a bit of a tragic story, and so he has peppered the script with comedy."

The play, written in 1905, is set just before the first Russian Revolution.

"It's about this man named Pavel Protasov and he's a scientist," says Bellwoar.

She adds that he's "trying to make a breakthrough."

"He's trying to create life," says Bonetti.

And there's a cholera outbreak on the horizon.

"He really feels that what he's working on is going to like fix the world," says Newton Buchanan, who plays Pavel.

"He's so busy looking at the universe that he doesn't see actually what's happening in his own house," says Bellwoar.

There are multiple storylines about love and deception.

Yelena is married to Pavel, but Dimitri Vageen, an artist friend of Pavel's, is having an affair with her.

This leads us to Boris' sister Melaniya.

"She's desperately trying to fill the spot of his current wife," says Madeleine Garcia, who plays Melaniya in the show. "She's on a quest for what love is."

"Then there is my character Boris, who is a lovelorn veterinarian," says Bonetti.

He's in love with Liza, Pavel's sister.

Bonetti says their relationship fluctuates, so it's a classic case of, "are they gonna get together, are they not gonna get together?"

"It is quite a soap opera," says Bellwoar.

The common thread is the quest for connection.

Bonetti says, "they fail miserably every single time."

"There's a hilarity in that, but there's also a number of very, very touching, heartbreaking moments in this."

Philadelphia Artists' Collective presents 'Children of the Sun' May 2-19 at the Bluver Theatre at the Drake.

Children of the Sun | Tickets
Philadelphia Artists' Collective
The Bluver Theatre at the Drake

302 S Hicks St, Philadelphia, PA 19102