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Moonshine & SkyToffee

This play was performed in Aug 2009 to an audience of over 300 at the New Hazlett Theater.

Moonshine and SkyToffee is adapted from two quirky, funny and adorable love stories by Vaikom Muhammad Basheer, written in the 1940s and set in southern India. While the first story deals with the affection of a young and hard-working man for his landlord’s unemployed daughter, the second explores the courtship of Zainaba, a tea shop owner, by the lovable pickpocket, Mandan Muthapa. Watching it all is the unforgettable character of Ottakannan Pokker, Zainaba’s one-eyed card-sharping father. Both these stories play themselves out with unexpected twists and turns, all laced with sparkling wit and irrepressible humor. This play was adapted by Rajiv Krishnan and ran to more than 200 sold-out shows across India.

Blue Mango is committed to multi-ethnic and non-traditional casting. All roles have been cast with no regard to color, country or accent.

Sam Nicotero

Sam Nicotero (Otakkannan Pokker) has a long history in the performing arts, and 35 years of experience in radio. He performed in Tony N Tina’s Wedding, at Station Square, for a two-year period. Sam has played lead roles in Ubu the King,Breaking Legs, and in the World Premiere of Reservoir Dogsat City Theatre, in 1996. He has also featured in several films, including, HoffaKingpinCrank and Daddy Cool, and others. This summer, Sam is performing in  Arrivederci Al!, a dinner theatre show on the Gateway Clipper.  He is currently shooting two local independent films – Rivers of Darkness and The Yinzers.

Jackie Omotalade

Jackie Omotalade (Zainaba) is excited to be appearing in this production of Moonshine and Skytoffee,alongside a phenomenally talented cast of actors. She last appeared on stage as Mother Africa in the musical play Salute, performed in Pittsburgh, Montreal, Quebec and Toronto. Locally,she has performed with the Kuntu Repertory Theatre’s production of the Rob Penny’s play Reachings.  Jackie is a graduate of Spelman College.  In addition to being an actress, she is a fitness model, fashion designer, life coach, certified personal trainer and yoga instructor, as well as an attorney. She was recently cast as a hospital administrator in the medical web drama series PALE. Please visit her at: www.jackieomotalade.com

Arvind Suresh

Arvind Suresh (Muthapa) would like to say that he comes from a long line of actors; but he doesn’t. His on stage experience is limited to a few goof ups in school, and a few more more in college. Moonshine and Skytoffee will be his first full length play, and he is excited to be a member of the cast for this production. Arvind is a biomedical researcher, pursuing his Ph.D. at the University of Pittsburgh’s Magee Women’s Research Institute. He is also an amateur photographer.

Christopher CussatChristopher Cussat (Kesavan Nayar) has been involved in acting for over 20 years, performing on both stage andscreen. His interest in the entertainment industry was sparked at a young age, when he first became involved in stage productions with an independent, repertoire company. On stage, Christopher has appeared in plays like Captain Neato-ManFor Better Or VersePrairie Du Chien, and She’s Seen Better Days. In film, Christopher recently had the lead in an independent film, Corporate Brandy. He has had minor roles in films like AdventurelandHollywood and WineMy Bloody Valentine (3-D), Sorority Row, and Inspector Gadget. Christopher has also appeared in national commercials for companies like AutoZone, and has done voice-over work for films like AwakeA Guide To Recognizing Your Saints, andStaten Island. In addition, he has done numerous modeling and print work for companies like Highmark, Rentway, and Alcoa. As a writer and director, Christopher’s stage play, Me, Myself and… was produced by Panache Productions, and he has co-founded an independent film production company named Two Guys From Italy Productions. As an established writer, Christopher’s fiction, poetry, and non-fiction works have appeared in publications like the Anchorage Daily NewsMy Favorite BulletNorth Hills Monthly MagazinePittsburgh Post-GazettePittsburgh Tribune-ReviewRecovery SolutionsSoul Fountain, and The Strip Magazine. Please visit him at: www.cussat.com

Monica JogiMonica Jogi  (Saramma) is a Business Systems Analyst for the corporate headquarters of a major education firm in Pittsburgh. She holds a Masters degree in Computer Science from the University of Bridgeport, CT. Monica has been part of the creative teams, and has performed in several plays and skits in college. She especially loves the idea of street theatre. She is also a dancer, and has given several performances. Monica is thrilled at the opportunity to work as part of the multicultural cast in Blue Mango’s first production. This production is a platform which will enable her to evaluate and pursue her long-term goal and dream to be a part of the performing industry.

2 Responses

  1. I am going to try and see the show on Sunday evening. 8/30 assuming that it is an evening performance. I think this a terrific idea and I wish you lots of luck with this project. .

  2. Hi Susie…
    This is a 2pm show on Sunday 8/30. Looking forward to seeing u there

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