Actor/playwright Dubac asks: Can we all get along?

In a world pop­u­lated by men and wo­men from dif­fer­ent plan­ets — Mars, Venus, take your pick! — Robert Dubac has cre­ated a show that ad­dresses those male/fe­male is­sues in his one-man, multi-char­ac­ter play, The Male In­tel­lect: An Oxy­mor­on?, which is at the Act II Play­house in Am­bler through Ju­ly 31.

Draw­ing on dec­ades of show-busi­ness ex­per­i­ence, Dubac had worked as a stand-up com­ic, a ma­gi­cian, an act­or, and as the open­ing act to roy­alty of the mu­sic world. He toured with Kenny Log­gins, Linda Ron­stadt and Jimmy Buf­fet, to name a few. He also was chosen to study with a se­lect group of act­ors un­der the per­son­al tu­tel­age of the late San­ford Meis­ner.

But today, Dubac says, he mostly en­joys writ­ing and ex­plor­ing polit­ic­al ideas, so­cial mores and the com­plex­ity of the hu­man ex­per­i­ence. He began writ­ing The Male In­tel­lect while ap­pear­ing on a soap op­era in New York. 

“I knew the soap op­er­as wouldn’t last forever, so I needed to find something else to keep me busy,” he said. “I had al­ways done a lot of stand-up, writ­ing and act­ing, so even­tu­ally I ended up put­ting all those in­gredi­ents to­geth­er. It turned out to be a bless­ing for me, be­cause no longer did I have to worry about not be­ing tall enough, or hav­ing the wrong hair col­or, or so many oth­er things act­ors have to worry about. Writ­ing let me be my own crit­ic and my own boss.”

It also let him cre­ate a clas­sic that is still go­ing strong and draw­ing in audi­ences for nearly 15 years. Dubac be­lieves the play stands the test of time, ap­peal­ing to those from 20 to 80, be­cause it ex­plores uni­ver­sal ma­ter­i­al: the struggle between men and wo­men that nev­er seems to change.

“The only way it will change,” he in­sisted dur­ing a re­cent tele­phone con­ver­sa­tion, “is when we’re all will­ing to grow up. Un­for­tu­nately, our ad­oles­cence is al­ways be­ing re­in­forced and we are en­cour­aged not to grow up. That needs to change be­fore we can all really un­der­stand each oth­er.”

Hav­ing been trans­lated in­to dozens of lan­guages and per­formed in just as many coun­tries, The Male In­tel­lect is pop­u­lated by a num­ber of char­ac­ters, in­clud­ing Bobby, the Col­on­el, Jean-Michel, Fast Ed­die, Old Mr. Linger and Ron­nie Cab­rezzi. At times, the show is taken on the road and handled by oth­er act­ors. But in the cur­rent pro­duc­tion, the au­thor is at the helm and plays all the roles him­self.

“All the char­ac­ters rep­res­ent something wo­men say they want but they are in­com­plete,” Dubac ex­plained. “For in­stance, one char­ac­ter is totally hon­est — to a fault. One is not well-roun­ded enough. An­oth­er shows his fe­male, softer side, which makes wo­men think he’s gay. So on the flip side, it may make wo­men look as though they’d like to have their cake and eat it too, and treated with some kind of en­ti­tle­ment.”

But just in case one seg­ment of our so­ci­ety were to storm the doors and string up Dubac by his strong ideas, he noted that this is def­in­itely a show for both men and wo­men — a show filled with equal-op­por­tun­ity of­fenses. He really be­lieves there’s a mes­sage in his play for every­body.

“My main mes­sage is that gen­er­ally we should not over­ana­lyze any­one else and that there is hope,” Dubac ex­plained. “Men are not against wo­men. We just have to un­der­stand our cul­ture and learn to live in it peace­fully. 

“Maybe,” he con­cluded, “we’re not sup­posed to fig­ure it all out, and just work from there. We’re all still evolving. Just look how DNA has changed over the gen­er­a­tions. Some day, hope­fully, we all will too, and men and wo­men will live hap­pily in the same hemi­sphere.” ••

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