In the Spotlife: Tamara Meneghini of 'The Testament of Mary'

Tamara Menegheni

Tamara Menegheni, an Associate Professor in the University of Colorado’s Department of Theatre and Dance, plays Mary in Goddess Here Productions’ one-woman production of  The Testament of Mary through May 13.

  • Tamara MenegheniHometown: Denver
  • Home now: Louisville
  • High school: Douglas County High School
  • College: BFA in Acting from Northern Illinois University
  • What have you done for us lately? I played Elizabeth in Elizabeth I – In Her Own Words, which was was presented as part of the Shakespeare First Folio national tour
  • Twitter-sized bio: I’m a Colorado native who grew up riding horses and raising all kinds of animals in Sedalia. My passion for performance took me across the country until I returned home to Colorado in 2008.
  • Web site:
  • master classWhat was the role that changed your life? Playing Maria Callas in Master Class three times. Each each time I discover something new and profound about the person behind the persona that causes me to feel so very deeply for her and all who share so much of their soul with others. There are so many layers to the role. Because she was a real person who left such an indelible mark on the world, one can study, listen and learn so much from her about what it means to be an artist and a human. 
  • Ideal scene partner: For several years now I have had the ultimate honor of working with my friend, director, actor and adaptor, Ami Dayan. I have to say that of all my theatre experiences, our collaborations have been the most fulfilling and fun. As an actor, his intensity and ability to play make acting exactly what it should be – a source of connection and abundant joy. I would also love to work with Dame Helen Mirren – her fierce grit, beauty, heart and humor radiate in all of her work. And because we share a bit of an obsession for all things having to do with monarchy, I imagine it would be something to hold court and work with her.
  • What is The Testament of Mary all about? For more than 2,000 years, the mother of Jesus has been silent. The Mary in our play speaks a defiant truth in a voice that is both tender and fierce. This is not the familiar saint – she seeks redemption in sharing her personal version of the truth of her son’s death by writing her own gospel on her own terms. The men are relentless in their attempts to compel her to agree to their memory as the official record of the truth. Mary is immovable as she recounts Jesus’ final days – and his incomparable sacrifice. Mary is grieving an immeasurable loss and is now asking the question: Was it worth it?
  • Tell is about the challenge of playing this role. Even though Mary is considered one of the most well-known characters in literature, she is also one of the least-written about.  The challenge has been to be true to my own interpretation of “this” Mary, in “this” story.  Colm Toibin’s writing is poetic and brilliant, at times difficult, heart-wrenching and powerful. However, deep within its poetry it gets to the heart – and even the humor – of a woman, mother and friend to so many.

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  • What do you hope audiences get out of seeing this play? This play is an opportunity for the audience consider what Mary may have been feeling, questioning, thinking and perhaps even written down, had she been given the chance. We really just want people to open their hearts and share the possibility of her experience. In this time of “alternative facts,” it seems appropriate to be given time and space to wonder and consider our own ideas of what is true or not.
  • What’s one thing most people don’t know about you? I am a rock-star crossing guard for the local elementary school.
  • What’s one thing you want to get off your chest? Never forget to say “thank you.”  I am a huge fan of hand-written notes. In the end, we are all giant composites of all that love that has been shared with us through our lives. Be grateful for it, dammit! 

  • Goddess Here Productions’ The Testament of Mary: Ticket information

    • Written by Colm Toibin
    • Presented by Goddess Here Productions
    • Directed by Ami Dayan
    • April 27 through May 13
    • Performances in the Carsen Theatre at the Dairy Arts Center
    • Dairy Arts Center, 2590 Walnut St., Boulder
    • Tickets $18-24 ($15 for students)
    • For tickets or information, call 303-444-7328 or the

    Performance schedule:
    • 7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 27
    • 7:30 p.m., Saturday, April 29
    • 6 p.m., Sunday, April 30
    • 7:30 p.m., Friday, May 5
    • 4 p.m., Saturday, May 6
    • 2 p.m., Sunday, May 7
    • 7:30 p.m., Monday, May 8
    • 7:30 p.m., Friday, May 12
    • 4 p.m., Saturday, May 13

    Cast list:

    • Tamara Meneghini a Mary

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    Meet Carley Cornelius of Colorado Springs TheatreWorks’ Constellations
    Meet Emily Paton Davies of Miners Alley Playhouse’s God of Carnage
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    Meet Denise Freestone of OpenStage’s August: Osage County
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