Playing With Fire: After Frankenstein

Playing With Fire: After Frankenstein

By Barbara Field

Directed by David M. Jenkins

Oct. 28 – Nov. 14, 2004

Thu. – Sat. 8pm, Sun. 4pm

Shimberg Playhouse, Straz Center for the Performing Arts

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What It's About

Jobsite has made a Bay area tradition out of Halloween shows. Jobsite has opened previous seasons with critically acclaimed and sold-out engagements of Clive Barker’s The History of the Devil, Steven Dietz’ Dracula and Shakespeare’s Titus Andronicus. In addition to that history, Jobsite feels that Frankenstein is a logical evolution of last season’s Top 10 production of Bloody Poetry.

Playing With Fire: After Frankenstein picks up where Shelley’s novel left off. In this fascinating and eloquent drama, an exhausted and dying Victor Frankenstein (Shawn Paonessa) has finally tracked down his Creature (Michael C. McGreevy) in the lonely, frozen tundra of the North Pole. What follows is a fierce debate, interrupted by key flashback scenes from the novel (featuring Ryan McCarthy as Victor, Sarah McKenna as Elizabeth, Ron Sommer as Professor Krempe and Jason Vaughan Evans as Adam), as they wrestle with the tragic consequences of this experiment gone awry. The exchange between Frankenstein and the Creature becomes a confrontation between parent and child, scientist and experiment, and ultimately between God and humanity – culminating in the Creature’s agonizing question, “Why did you make me?”

One of the most enduring horror stories of all time, Frankenstein has held readers spellbound since its publication in 1818. Written at a time when science was in its ascendancy, the novel spoke directly to popular fears about the dangers and consequences of man’s overstepping nature’s boundaries.

(L-R) Shawn Paonessa and Michael C. McGreevy in Jobsite's Playing With Fire: After Frankenstein. (Photo: Brian Smallheer.)

The story of Victor Frankenstein, a scientist obsessed with the desire to create life, and the Creature he reanimates with electricity, lays bare the frailties – both good and evil – of the human heart. Frankenstein deserts his Creature in horror, and the Creature – frightful, dangerous, abandoned and yet longing for acceptance – seems all too human in his yearning and isolation. Today the story resonates as a brilliant interpretation of the consequences of scientific inquiry and as a timeless illumination of the human soul and the monster that lurks within all of us.

Critic Reviews

This is not the Frankenstein you've grown up with. Chief among the strengths is the acting... Michael C. McGreevy is an imposing figure who helps give the creature an air of dignity and a rage that's been stirred by humanity but subdued by art and intellectualism. Shawn Paonessa's Dr. Frankenstein is less controlled. He's a different kind of Everyman; he's forced to live, literally and figuratively, with his greatest mistake and the result to his psyche is devastating. – St. Petersburg Times

Jobsite still has the timing, wit and versatility to pull off a hectic satire — now with even more polish and finesse ... they got me silent-laughing so hard that I even cried a little. – Tampa Bay Times

Let's get right to the point: If you're a local-theater fan who's got a friend who loves every type of live performance experience except local theater, saying it's just not their thing, this is probably the first show you need to drag them to ... From the first minutes of the fourth-wall-breaking intro [it] was evident that the three guys onstage were determined above all to entertain the shit out of the audience. – Creative Loafing


Cast & Crew

  • David M. Jenkins – Director
  • Jaime Giangrande-Holcom – Stage Manager


  • Jason Evans – Adam
  • Ryan McCarthy – Victor
  • Michael C. McGreevy – Creature
  • Sarah McKenna – Elizabeth
  • Shawn Paonessa – Frankenstein
  • Ron Sommer – Prof. Krempe


  • Tim Brummett – Body Parts Specialist
  • Dickie Corley – Light Designer / Technical Director
  • Kari Goetz – Assistant Director
  • Chris Holcom – Make-Up Specialist
  • John Lott – Set Designer
  • Kevin Spooner – Composer / Sound Designer
  • Katrina Stevenson – Costume Designer

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