Review of TantraNova Man Show by Lauren Zerbst

Everyone needs a hero. For ages boys and girls have looked up to Superman, Wonder Woman, firefighters, sports figures, and celebrities for inspiration.

Heroes give us strength and courage to get through the day-to-day sufferings of life. They are role models for who we want to become when we grow up. When we do grow older, the action figures and posters of our heroes are often left in attics collecting dust. We may or may have grown into something like what our childhood heroes portrayed.

This weekend I was introduced to a new idea of a hero. The hero within. I discovered that we don’t need to look outside ourselves for a hero, but that each of us is a hero in ourselves that is on a personal quest.

This idea was born out of a one-man show entitled TantraNova Man starring Freddy Zental Weaver. The show takes the audience on a journey through Freddy Zental’s own heroic journey to find creativity, joy, and pleasure in his life. As the play opens, the audience sees the birth of intelligence, of the human form from the star dust of the universe. It is a beautiful and interpretive piece that leaves the audience eagerly anticipating what is to come. Through the show we look into defining moments of Freddy Zental’s life as his own heroic quest is played out for our entertainment and learning.

We are first introduced to a curious young boy who hears his parents making love and are taken along as he strives to attain the loving, sexually charged energy of his first experience with sex. The quest includes a very comic recreation of his first orgasm, a vulnerable scene in which the audience sits with his aloneness during his parent’s divorce, his love of basketball, falling in and out of love, and the rejection of the corporate world to create something more meaningful in his life. Through Freddy Zental’s own musical creations and well-timed jokes, the audience is brought together and feels a sense of “oneness” and togetherness.

The story on stage is left to be interpretive and synthesized into the audience members’ own heroic journey. It is the opportunity to break out and transcend our “Samsara” or cycle of suffering and be in the adventure, be in the moment, be in the collective energy. At the end of the performance, the energy in the room is fulfilling and peaceful, yet buzzing with inspiration and arousal. You can see the difference on the faces of everyone in the audience, each getting something unique for him/herself out of Freddy Zental’s story. TantraNova Man is more than a show, it is an experience.

It opens the earholes and hearts of everyone in the room and encourages them to find their creative energy. It gives birth to the hero in all of us so each member leaves with courage, strength, and connection to his/her own superpowers that will enable their own individual quests. Individually audience members are inspired, and together, through the message of oneness, the whole audience is enlightened.

I highly recommend!! Lauren is a writer in Chicago and is in the process of completing her Master’s Degree in Social Work at Loyola University

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