The Secrets of the World
“The art of navigation incites those who follow it to learn the secrets of the world." -- Christopher Columbus
Four Taino Indians, paraded by Columbus before Queen Isabella, vow to change history. Carey hopes to return to his war-torn home, Guamo escapes into Inquisition Spain, Karaya brushes Isabella’s hair and trades a bell for a book, but her husband, Macana vows to sacrifice himself by killing King Ferdinand to bring down the empire.
Steeled by myth, each explorer explores a new world in which hope, intimacy, and conquest collide, and Queen Isabella discovers that the world is bigger and more complicated than in her wildest dreams.
The play is intimate in expression, but epic in scope, and double-casting makes the large number of characters manageable.
Casting: 6 W, 8 M (or 3 W, 5 M with meaningful double casting.)
Development History: The Secrets of the World was commissioned and originally developed by Playground, James A. Kleinmann, Artistic Director. Playground dramaturg, Sonia Fernandez, and playwright Brian Thorstenson were both instrumental in its development.
City Lights Theatre in San Jose presented a staged reading of the play, directed by Janet Wessner, on February 7, 2012
Tracy Ward directed a staged reading of the play on March 13, 14, 15, 2009 at El Teatro de la Esperanza as part of the SFSU Greenhouse Festival.
Playground presented a staged reading of The Secrets of the World, directed by Jon Tracy, on May 18, 2008 at the Thick House in San Francisco.
Read Me: A draft of The Secrets of the World is available on The New Play Exchange.