The Malta Independent 22 August 2019, Thursday

From NYC to Spazju Kreattiv: Cody Hively stars in The Acrobat

Tuesday, 5 February 2019, 08:45 Last update: about 8 months ago

Carla Zahra speaks to American actor Cody Hively, who will be starring in Unifaun Theatre Productions’ upcoming play, The Acrobat

Straight out of West Virginia University, where he graduated with a BFA in Acting, the talented, fresh-faced Cody Hively has landed his first leading role in the vampire romantic-comedy, The Acrobat. Just a few months after relocating to the Big Apple, Cody has just flown into Malta from New York City to star in Unifaun Theatre Company's latest play.

As the old saying goes, when one door closes, another one opens. This proved true for former college decathlete Cody, who discovered a new passion for theatre after an injury prevented him from pursuing a future in sports. "I always had this inner fire and drive for the sports I competed in," he says. "It was all I could think about. But, once this passion was being unfulfilled, it only took one acting class to know that I wanted to do this for the rest of my life."

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The Acrobat is the first-ever adaptation of Italian writer Agnes Moon's feel-good novel of the same name. Besides this, the LGBTIQ play is innovative on a number of counts, as it introduces a new genre to the Maltese theatrescape, which will be brought to life by an international cast of professional actors from Malta, New York, UK, Italy, Switzerland and Hungary.

A rag-to-riches love story between two broken individuals, The Acrobat tells the tale of two vampires from different clans. Cody will be playing the play's central role - the rough diamond Liam - who he describes as 'a free spirit, but as tough as they come'. Under the direction of Stephen Oliver, he will appear alongside a talented cast, including Marco Michel, Martin Szekely, Jamie Cardona, Rambert Attard, Clayton Mallia and Mark Windsor.

Asked about why he chose to fly all the way to Malta for this performance, Cody says that the opportunity to work in new countries is an enthralling aspect of being an actor, as it enables him to grow his creative network and learn from different creative backgrounds.

"I am very blessed to have found a growing circle of like-minded artists who share goals of creating stories to incite meaning and emotion in their viewers," he continues. In fact, upon returning to NYC, he will be flying to Jacksonville, Florida, to star in a film produced by close friend. 

But, before he gets back on a plane, there are a number of things he wants to experience on the Maltese Islands. "I'm really looking forward to visiting the Hypogeum and the Blue Lagoon in Comino, even though I won't be doing any swimming," he says, disappointed to find out that it's too cold to wear the swimming shorts that he packed.

And, just like every other 'HUGE' Game of Thrones fan, Cody couldn't wait to pay a visit to the Silent City. "Walking through Mdina makes you feel like you're in King's Landing," he says. His first impression - besides wondering how we drive on the left side of the road 'without getting into car wrecks all the time' - was the captivating beauty and architecture that the Islands offer. Plus, being able to perform in the Spazju Kreattiv theatre, which sits in the St James Cavalier designed in the 16 century by Francesco Laparelli da Cortona himself, has been one of the highlights of this experience.

 "I really enjoy the intimate nature of the space at Spazju Kreattiv. As an audience member, it's going to feel like you're a part of the action, so feel free to applause, cry and laugh!"

He describes the play as a new experience and hopes to create a meaningful performance that audiences will take with them, even after leaving the theatre. "Poor, young Liam has had much evil fall upon him, yet he has so much love to give. The only problem is that his past has taught him to never show his feelings."

 

Unifaun Theatre Productions' production of The Acrobat will be staged at Spazju Kreattiv in Valletta on 9, 10, 15, 16, 17, 22, 23 and 24 February. All shows start at 8 pm and the play is suitable for audiences aged 18+. Tickets start at €15 for stalls and €10 for balcony seats.

This project is supported by the MAF Project Fund of the Arts Council Malta


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