This year’s show is as much about the forces that threaten Santa Fe from beyond its borders as it is the people who live within it.
A tradition stretching back to 1918, the annual melodrama is the work of an anonymous group of writers who take aim at what makes the City Different so different and, well, so obnoxious (at times). This year’s show is as much about the forces that threaten Santa Fe from beyond its borders as it is the people who live within it. Set in 1917, the play conjures up a world in which President Woodrow Wilson has taken to governing by brief, bombastic proclamations in the style of our own present-day Twitter-obsessed leader. He dispatches one Boris Kofveve, played by Jerry Ferraccio, to whip the City Different into shape after its council adopts an immigrant-friendly “sanguichary” policy.
While Kofveve claims to be from Texas, his thick Eastern European accent and frequent references to Russia leave locals suspecting otherwise. But he finds an ally in Gov. Boozeanna Martinis, played by Libby King, who comes off as a combination of Cruella de Vil and Karen Walker. On his side, too, is city council member Savannah Scandelara. Played by Katie Johnson, Scandelara finances her gambling habit by pilfering funds from the public schools.
Conveniently for Martinis, the action unfolds in the Río Drama Dance Hall, where the city government has set up shop after the feds cut off its funding over the sanctuary city policy. It’s not long before Martinis uses her veto power to wipe out other monies for the municipality.