News/ Media

Written by Troy DianaMonarch Theater NYC Dress RehearsalEdinburgh Fringe 2015
Directed by Jennifer M. Ortega
With:  Miguel Belmonte, Shawn Mahoney, Marchelle Thurman, John Curtis, and Troy Diana as Mrs. Raymond

A comedic and irreverent exploration of homophobia, religion, and the meaning of family.  When an openly gay man visits his niece and nephew he gets more than he bargained for.


“Humorous true-to-life writing and excellent performances…” – Darryl Reilly,


“A cheeky afternoon treat”
“Salty, sweet magical realism”
From Catherine Lyons as posted on The List
“This play stood head and shoulders above the rest”
“A delight to watch”
“Highly recommended”
From Fiona Long as posted on The List
“A show not to be missed”
From Chris Morin as posted on
“Very talented actors…powerful messages”
From Neil Curran as posted on
Monarch Theater NYC Dress RehearsalEdinburgh Fringe 2015

Performing as part of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival at:
C nova (Studio 3) Venue 145 India Buildings, Victoria Street, EH1 2EX
August 5-22 at 15:45 (3:45 PM)   50 min.
Tickets:  £8.50-£10.50 / concessions £6.50-£8.50

Stage Manager:  Nicole Brickley
Set Designer:  Natalie Pecora
Costume Designer:  Leon Weibers
Sound/ Original Music:  Jason Diana
Dramaturg:  Victor Gluck
Table Construction:  Jose HoMonarch Theater NYC Dress RehearsalEdinburgh Fringe 2015
Production Intern:  Mia Shoquist

Originally developed by:  NYAS:PE

The Team:

Miguel Belmonte (Camillo) Theatre includes Paul & Eddie (Roy Arias – Take Ten Festival – Best Actor nomination), Tango Masculino (OOBR Award Winner, Wings Theatre), Memory is a Culinary Affair (Manhattan Repertory Theatre). Film includes The Unexpected Life, Yo La Peor de Todas (Best Short at the Chicago Latino Film Festival), The Empty Nest (Best Foreign Short at FilmOut San Diego), A Life in Shadows. TV: The Knick. He trained with Barbara Marchant at The William Esper Studio. Miguel’s last film, You. Me. Bathroom. Sex. Now. premiered at Cannes Film Festival to great reviews.

John Curtis (Charles) is very excited to be part of “These Troubled Times and to return to the Edinburgh Fringe, where he previously appeared in Embedded in 2007. John’s Theatre credits include My Fair Lady (Oldcastle Theatre Company) Fuddy Meers(River Valley Rep) A Year withFrog and Toad (Summer Theatre of New Canaan)  A Christmas Carol (Woodstock Playhouse)Peter Pan: A Musical Adventure (Roxy Regional Theatre) The Merchant of Venice  York Shakespeare Company) and Hamlet ( Queens Players). John holds a B.F.A in Acting from Syracuse University, and has also studied at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London. “Thank you to the entire TTT team, and to my family for their un-ending support”.

Troy Diana (Mrs. Raymond/Playwright) has written and performed three solo shows including Stressed, Depressed, and Repressed, Take This Job and Storia which was part of the 2007 MITF and performed at South Hill Park, England. His play Double Fault was part of the 2013 FringeNYC Festival. He made his Off Broadway debut in 2010 as a playwright and director withTales From The Tunnel  (co-written and co-directed with James Valletti). His other writing credits include Reganomics, Mellencamp, The Adventures of Mister Sister with Jayson Spence, and The Raven’s Wife. Troy was a member of the 2006 Lincoln Center Theater Directors Lab. Much thanks to the most supportive friends and family ever!

Shawn Mahoney (Ed/J.R.) studied at the prestigious William Esper Studio in NYC and was fortunate enough to join the Aisling Arts Theater Company shortly thereafter spending several years working on fantastic works by creative director Brynn Manion.  Among his most rewarding experience was being a part of the Pulitzer nominated Force Trilogy.  He has had a 2guest star role on TV's White Collar and recently co-starred on Alpha House for Amazon TV. He is blessed to be reprising his roles for "These Troubled Times", and very thankful to have the opportunity to join Monarch on this wonderful journey to Scotland!

Marchelle Thurman (Melinda/Riley) hails from Chicago and graduated from NYU Tisch School of the Arts with a BFA in Drama.  Some favorite credits include Clair in It’s A Chucked Up Life, Nicole Bell in Outcry, Melinda/Riley in These Troubled Times and Viv in Thru 25, which she also produced and wrote. She would like to thank you to her amazing friends and family for theirsupport and Monarch Theater NYC for this wonderful opportunity.

Jennifer M. Ortega (Director, Artistic Director) founded Monarch Theater so that new plays andinnovative plays and playwrights would get produced. Her directing credits include: DREAMSOF HOME,  FUR and  WHISTLE by  Migdalia  Cruz;  STORIA by  Troy  Diana,  PRINCESSSUPERSTAR   WORLD   TOUR   in   London;   (IN)COMPLETE   WOMAN   or   DISSECTEDDETECTIVE STORY at  Center  Stage  NYC; PLANET OF THREE PEOPLE at  New YorkInternational Fringe Festival and LOS DUENDES at Henry Street Settlement, NYC.

Nicole Brickley (Stage Manager) has been an independent freelance stage manager in NYC for 9years and has worked on countless productions with Plays for Living, Henson Alternative, Ma-YiTheatre, Serious Theatre Collective and many others. This is her third consecutive summer collaborating with the magnificent Troy Diana. Nicole was a venue director for the NY Fringe Festival for 4 seasons. She also works as a backstage manager for Mercedes Benz Fashion Week,and has sent Heidi Klum down the runway more times than she can count. She sends her love and thanks to dearest friends and family, especially Mom and Sophie. Cheers, mate!

Natalie Pecora (Sets) is a native Long Islander and a graduate of the New York School of InteriorDesign. SET DESIGNER/SCENIC PAINTER/PROP MASTER credits include NY Fringe Festival, MITF (Best Set for The Bauer Sisters), Open Book Productions’ Beacon Hill the Series,and various productions in Long Island and the Hudson Valley.

Leon Wiebers (Costumes) has designed productions in the United States and internationally.  He is a recent Fulbright Research Scholar to South Korea examining Traditional Dress.  Recent credits:  The Music Man for Glimmerglass Festival and the Royal Opera in Oman; The King and I for the Maltz Jupiter Theatre both directed by Marcia Milgrom Dodge.  He is a long-term collaborator at California Music Circus for over 10 years.  Other companies: San Francisco Opera Center, Georgia Shakespeare Festival, English National Opera, Theatre du Chatelet in Paris, Getty Museum Portland Center Stage, and the National Theatre of Korea.  Numerous awards and grants.

Jason Diana (Sound/ Original Music) graduated from Berklee College of Music in 2001 with a Contemporary Writing and Production degree. Since then he has been performing, touring, composing and teaching. Jason has performed at the Hard Rock Café, House of Blues, and several festivals. He has shared the stage with national acts such as The Toadies, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, Finger Eleven, and The Black Crows to name a few. Jason has composed 3scores for the following shows: Tales From The Tunnel, Double Fault, Storia, and Stressed, Depressed, Repressed.

Monarch Theater Company (Producer) is a New York City-based not-for-profit founded in 1997. The company has long been on a mission to collaborate with artists from a wide variety of disciplines. Their partnerships develop laboratories and create new spaces for contemporary theater that challenge and excite creators and audiences alike. Monarch’s passion for cultural andartistic diversity has led to stage plays, movement pieces, puppet shows, podcasts, and radio plays. Learn more at or

Past Production Info:

59E59th St.  East to Edinburgh Festival, NYC

Ryan Repertory Theater, Coney Island, NYC

For press inquiries, or other inquiries about this show:

Monarch Theater NYC
332 Bleecker Street, # D1
New York, NY 10014
(212) 982-3353 or

Past Press:

These Troubled Times Press

“…Well-observed, often very humorous true-to-life writing and excellent performances.” - Darryl Reilly,


Women of Smoke FringeNYC Press

“If you have a chance to see it, don’t miss it!”  – Amanda Alvarez,


“Bravo brings to life a believable portrait of what it means to grow up on the border, with all its enchantment and menace.”  – Amy Pearsall,


Read the Q & A with playwright/ actress Brandi Bravo.

Read the Q & A by Amanda Alvarez.

Read the Being Latino article “In Her Own Words” by Eileen Rivera.