The Hunt for Benedetto Montone

Directed by Minita Gandhi

Lead sponsor Anonymous


Amid the German occupation of Italy during World War II, Pietro struggles to provide for his family while caught between Fascist law and Catholic morality. A play about our susceptibility to government-sponsored fear and hatred.

Playwright Statement

I was drawn to the German occupation of Italy during World War II for a number of reasons; foremost among them was the chance to grapple with our susceptibility to government-sponsored fear and hatred.  

Is this susceptibility an innately human characteristic? Should we not be ready and willing to uphold our moral code at all costs? How do those with authority use their power and influence to slowly chip away at our belief systems, leading us to justify even the unimaginable?


Pietro Bonatti Michael J. Hume*
Grazia Bonatti Eileen DeSandre*
Nevio Bonatti Nathaniel C. Walker
Marco Sala U. Jonathan Toppo*
Lucia Sala Allison Walker
Stage directions Wyatt Fisher
*Appearing through an Agreement between ANPF and Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States.

Runtime: 2 hours 20 minutes, plus intermission

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Playwright Image

Victor Lesniewski’s plays include The Fifth Domain (World Premiere at Contemporary American Theater Festival); Couriers and Contrabands (World Premiere at TBG Theatre in NYC, Critic Howard Miller’s Best of Off & Off-Off Broadway List); Cloven Tongues (World Premiere at The Wild Project in NYC); Where Bison Run (Ars Nova Out Loud Reading Series, NY Times Profile); Pipistrellus (The Dramatists Guild Fellowship); Khardal (Berkeley Rep’s The Ground Floor); Cold Spring (Ashland New Plays Festival); and Tentative City (SF Playhouse Play Reading Series).

Victor was the only American to be shortlisted for the inaugural Theatre503 Playwriting Award, which included six writers culled from over 1,600 applicants. He is a former Uncharted Artist in Residence at Ars Nova. In recent years he has also developed work at Roundabout Theatre Company, New York Theatre Workshop, Geva Theatre Center (NY), Pioneer Theatre Company (UT), Northern Stage (VT), Palm Beach Dramaworks (FL), Benchmark Theatre (CO), Playwrights’ Arena (CA), and La Mama Umbria.

He is proud to sit on The Dramatists Guild’s Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Access Committee.

Director Image

Minita Gandhi (she/they) is a Los Angeles-based multi-hyphenate who was born in Mumbai, India. They love magic realism, dark comedy and exploring multi-genre, multicultural, and multi-generational stories as a medium for healing.

They are a 2022 NYSAF Pfaelzer Award finalist and are currently working on an opera commission through Minnesota Opera Company’s New Works cohort. Minita is the director/producer for a 5-episode documentary series and the director/writer of Hindsight is 2020 or how Raisin Rainbows survived a pandemic, starring Tony Award nominee Cora Vanderbroek.

Their critically-acclaimed solo-show Muthaland, was Jeff Recommended for best new work and solo-performance as well as an official selection of the NNPN’s Women in Playwriting Festival at Florida Studio Theater. Her work has been featured by NBC News and The Atlantic.

They are the Founder of IGNITE, a mentorship program for BIPOC women and non-binary theater artists that connects emerging artists to national theater leaders.

Eileen DeSandre
Eileen DeSandre
Wyatt Fisher
Wyatt Fisher
Michael J. Hume
Michael J. Hume
U. Jonathan Toppo
U. Jonathan Toppo
Walker Allison Headshot 1web
Allison Walker
Nathaniel C. Walker
Nathaniel C. Walker

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