Arts & Entertainment

Corbino Brings His ‘Bread & Puppet’ to Home Town

corbino2It will be Greg Corbino’s first theater performance in his home town of Falls Church since his legendary leading role in “Oklahoma!” as a George Mason High School senior in 2004.

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HE’S BACK! Greg Corbino, GMHS Class of 2004. (Photo: News-Press)

 

It will be Greg Corbino’s first theater performance in his home town of Falls Church since his legendary leading role in “Oklahoma!” as a George Mason High School senior in 2004.

Corbino, who graduated from Emerson College in 2008, has been touring with the famous Bread and Puppet Theater acting troupe for the last two years, including on extended trips to Taiwan, the Midwest and a slated tour of Europe next month. For the first time, the troupe will wend its way to the new ArtSpace of Falls Church for a show in the town where Greg grew up this Monday night.

Bread and Puppet has performed “social justice theater” utilizing giant puppets for 45 years since forming on the streets of New York in the turbulent 1960s. They gained a lot of attention then when they initiated the use of giant, 14-foot-high puppets at anti-Vietnam War protests, and have continued to the present under the direction of Peter Schumann.

The troupe has also become renowned for its practice of serving fresh, homemade bread to its audiences at the conclusion of its performances.

The outfit is based at its own farm commune in Glover, Vermont, where the two dozen or so mostly 20s-something actors and musicians hang out and grow their own food when not on tour.

Slated to arrive in Washington, D.C. yesterday, Bread and Puppet begins its run at the St. Stephen’s Church, 1525 Newton St. NW, tonight at 7 p.m., followed by shows at the same venue Friday at 7 p.m. and Saturday at 3 p.m. Members of DC’s “Puppet Underground” group have also been invited to rehearse and perform in the shows.

Monday, the troupe, an entourage of five on this tour, will migrate to Falls Church, constituting the homecoming for Corbino. He told the News-Press by phone while riding the troupe’s colorfully-painted school bus en route from New York yesterday that he intends to stay in the Forest Drive home he grew up in with his parents, Peter and Connie Corbino, during the group’s five-day stay in the area.

Greg and his tenure at Bread and Puppet were profiled in a feature article in the News-Press in December 2008. He talked about going to Emerson College to study drama and hooking up with the Bread and Puppet troupe following his graduation in 2008 when he decided he wanted his acting and theater arts talents put to a worthwhile cause.

He was famous throughout his upbringing in Falls Church for his acting and singing, including his still-legendary lead role in a smashing performance of “Oklahoma!” in his senior year at George Mason High.

“I am really excited,” Greg told the News-Press, “About coming back to Falls Church.” He said most of his old high school friends have left, but he intends to call the ones who may be around, and invite them come to Monday’s show.

He will be a featured performer in the Bread and Puppet production at the ArtSpace of Falls Church, 400 S. Maple St., Monday night at 7:30 p.m. On that occasion, the troupe will reprise its “Dirt Cheap Money Cabaret” show for the dirt-cheap admission price of $10.

According to the billing, the show “features the Jolly Battle between Mountaintop Removal Protesters and Mountaintop Machinery, an ancient take on Bananas, Singing Turkeys, a President and a Chair, Theater Blue, Civil Society Decommissioning Songs and much more, all interspersed with commentary from Karl Marx. The Even Cheaper Brass Ensemble will provide lively sounds to celebrate spring.”