Monsters of the American Cinema

Monsters of the American Cinema stars Bjorn Goller as Remy Washington and Aidan Short as Peter. Photo: Carol Spags Photography

Different Strokes! Monsters of the American Cinema

A haunting and humorous tale about fathers and sons, ghosts, and the monsters we battle in the world and within ourselves.

Monsters of the American Cinema
Monsters of the American Cinema stars Bjorn Goller as Remy Washington and Aidan Short as Peter. Photo: Carol Spags Photography

“How do you prepare your child for a rapidly changing, sometimes volatile world; a world that may try and teach them to hate people like you?”

This is the question asked by award-winning playwright Christian St. Croix with his play, Monsters of the American Cinema, to be performed by Different Strokes! Performing Arts Collective this spring.

“Will they grow to fight the monsters, or will they become monsters themselves?”

Winner of the 2021 Carlo Annoni International Drama Award, Monsters of the American Cinema tells the story of Remy Washington, a Black man, who finds himself the owner of a drive-in movie theater when his husband dies. He also becomes caregiver to his late husband’s straight, White, teenaged son, Peter, called “Pup.”

United by their love of classic American monster movies, the two have developed a warm and caring familial chemistry. That relationship is tested when Remy discovers that Pup’s behavior with his friends is contrary to the life they’ve established at home. Told through dueting monologue and playful dialogue, Monsters of the American Cinema is a haunting and humorous tale about fathers and sons, ghosts, and the monsters we battle in the world and within ourselves.

Stephanie Hickling Beckman, Different Strokes! Managing Artistic Director, says, “This fast-paced, and engaging two-hander about a unique father-son relationship challenges the idea of family, and the responsibilities of being in a relationship of any kind with other people. It brings up human nature and the ever-present need for connection and acceptance in a world that often neither understands nor makes room for our differences. St. Croix has done a beautiful job of creating conflict which is both intense and polarizing and manages to resolve it without leaning on predictability.”

“With Monsters of the American Cinema, I really wanted to shed a spotlight on a kind of modern family we rarely see onstage,” St. Croix explains. “Remy represents hundreds of LGBTQ parents, many raising children who aren’t biologically theirs, quite a few raising children who don’t even share their racial background. The love is still there, however. Along with it, the parenting fears.”

For Monsters of the American Cinema, Different Strokes! has partnered with Youth Outright, a nonprofit organization that supports LGBTQ+ youth, which will receive a portion of the proceeds from the production’s ticket sales.

The play features Bjorn Goller as Remy and Aidan Short as Pup. Performances are June 2-19, 2022; Thursday, Fridays, and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, June 19 at 3 p.m. The production is staged at the Tina McGuire Theatre at The Wortham Center for Performing Arts, 18 Biltmore Avenue in downtown Asheville. Tickets are $20 for General Admission. Covid Policy: Masking is required for all shows performed at the Wortham Center for Performing Arts, regardless of vaccination status.

For more information, please visit www.differentstrokespac.org or call (828) 484-2014.

 

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