Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

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Showing ‘Promise’

Every family makes promises to their children, but what is the consequence of a broken promise?

Arts Alliance presents Jose Rivera’s The Promise, the story of a Puerto Rican family in Patchogue, Long Island. A teenage girl named Lilia must decide whether to obey her father, Guzman, and marry the wealthy Hiberto, or defy him and marry Carmelo, her first love.

“Just to see really fresh college theatre, like The Promise, is exciting,” co-producer and Communication junior Lindsay Meck says. “It’s something students won’t see every day.”

But the play is more than just a simple love story between Carmelo and Lilia; it involves culture and family as well. The poetic and dark comedy incorporates themes of liberation and tradition with images of home, love and death.

“The play starts as a smart situational comedy and then, like life, it doesn’t stay funny for long,” says Communication sophomore Dan Foster, who plays Carmelo and Hiberto. “There are moments of great beauty and great tragedy.”

Yet you don’t need to know Puerto Rican culture to understand The Promise; it’s a universal story that any audience member can grasp. It underlines the need for a stable family, maturity and how life operates in the absence of love.

“Any young adult can be interested in that process,” says Communication senior Diane Patterson, who plays Lilia’s neighbor, Lolin. “Everyone has family, even if it is a crappy one.”

Rivera drew on techniques of his favorite Latin-American writers, like Jorge Luis Borges and Gabriel Garc

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Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881
Showing ‘Promise’