Barretto, J. Michael (Part-Hawaiian American playwright, Internet professional, Web designer, 1954- ), "Fruits (of Labor),"
a 55-minute ethno-social episodic drama in English and Hawaiian set in Hawaii, 1856-1996,
3m1f (2f extras),
© 1996, script/rights available from J Michael Barretto, P. O. Box 383, Hanapepe, HI 96716, U.S.A. or email@example.com or http://www.kiloihana.com/fruitsin.htm, telephone (work) 808-335-0001, (home) 808-335-0001. Cited to present author by playwright via e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, January 8, 1997; Barretto says,
Synopsis "(Scene 1) Danny, unemployed, and John, working, riffle the refrigerator for beer. John is preparing for a gig. Roger the bandleader arrives. Danny, although uninvited, joins the band. (2) John loses his job, looks for work, and goes to the Saturday night gig. (3) Tutu, alone as narrator, has her 'memories' enacted (on-screen with musical backing). She describes her life in Hawaii of the 1800s and encourages young Danny. (4) Danny, trying for a job at a hotel, hears he is 'overqualified.' Tutu tells of older days, pride, culture. Danny relates to John her teachings and the importance of knowing one's history/genealogy. (5) Accompanied by more music, Roger and John move to another island for work. Danny, unwilling to leave his home, stays back looking for work. Tutu explains the importance of culture, history and hope, music. (6) Danny, evicted from his home, lives on the beach, retaining his connection to history.
Comment "'Fruits (of Labor)' tells of the modern Hawaiian. It gives insight to why and how that person thinks and acts. The play, actually quite universal in application, with slight revision could apply to any number of native cultures, such as Caribbean, Native American."
Press release, January 10, 1997 Aloha no -- The script for "Fruits," a one act play about three local boys is available for reading online at http://www.kilohana.com/fruitsin.htm. The play is slated for production Friday, Saturday, and Sunday on two weekends, May 2, 3, 4, 9, 10, 11, 1997, by the Kauai Community Players. Written and Directed by J. Michael Barretto, "Fruits" will show at Kaua'i locations in the month of April for three consecutive weekends. More detailed information is available by calling Michael at 808.335.0001, or at the website http://www.kilohana.com/fruitsrun.htm.
The story tells of Danny Kama, a man Hawaiian in his early forties fallen on unemployment and his two friends John Cummings (haole boy) and Roger. All Carpenters, they are also musicians and gig part time. Danny's life is ruled by the teachings and memories of Tutu, his grandmother. Throughout the show, Tutu appears as Danny's memories, while a projected image on screen shows her memories and thoughts of days gone by. We learn what Danny has learned, and by the end of the show the audience will better know why Danny acts and thinks the way he does.
It is a story of pride, direction and hope. Traditional Hawaiian and original music (written by Barretto and performed live) before, after and throughout the course of the story make for an enjoyable experience, and Author/Director Barretto assures that the pupu and music at the end will make the Hawaiians and everyone else in the audience feel right at home.
Those interested in auditioning for this performance run or sponsoring future productions of "Fruits" should contact Michael Barretto at: J Michael Barretto 808.335.0001.
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Press release ,May 6, 1997 -- Lihue, Kauai, Hawaii
FRUITS IS MORE THAN JUST A PLAY!
Enthusiastic audiences experienced both a play and an event the
opening weekend of "Fruits." An original story about modern Hawaiians
it is billed as a one act play. The live Hawaiian music on the lanai
starts right at showtime and is a part of the "event"! The curtain
opens a half hour later. After that , the show moves pretty
With Hawaiian music to set the mood, the audiences are
invited into the theatre with an oli written by Barretto's daughter
Ka`iulani. "'ike i ko lakou uhane a ola" is one line, referring to
the actors onstage and the story they are about to tell. And after we
see the story told, Barretto serves Pupu on the lanai with more music.
The effect creeps up on the audience as they realize that although we
expected a one act play, the entire 2 hour-plus experience ties
together to tell a story of hope and history.
Barretto was ear to ear with the crowds. "All we have to do now is get
more Hawaiians out to experience the show," he said. "This is for us...
all of us. I think it really helps to know you aren't alone out there,
and in 'Fruits' I tried to do just . When you have so many people who
can relate to a common plight, with common goals, beliefs, and
aspirations, it's not just people anymore. Now it's a movement." He
was referring to comments from the show-goers like, "That's my son up
there," or "I'm that guy."
A first-time Director, Barretto has taken several rather gutsy
steps to present his message. Multimedia, using video, music and stage
creates a feeling of a link to the past with the present through the use
of lighting and sound. He has set a rather barren stage. Lighting is
subtle and sparse. The fact that this works so well speaks highly of
the skill of the Kauai backstage, lighting and sound technicians
in this production.
The four amateur actors take on an ambitious task in this tight one
act with the story and set changes unfolding around them even as they
remain onstage. All in all they retain a feeling of naturalness and
rather than watching actors, I found myself relating to
Comments and reactions after the show ranged from tears of understanding
to chuckles about some of the more pungent lines. No one was bored.
When I looked at the crowd enjoying the music and food on the lanai
after the stage presentation I thought, after all, in Hawaii what's a
party without music and food?
The second (and final) weekend showings are at the Lihu`e Parish Hall,
May 9, 10, at 7:30 pm, and Sunday the 11th at 6:30 pm.
This Website continues under construction and welcomes new citations and comments.
Page updated May 8, 1997, by the site Webmaster.