*Somehow* everything came together in the end! On the one hand, our Ballio was a fearsome villain, threatening slaves and courtesans alike with his words and his whip. On the other hand, the pimp’s victims ultimately managed to undermine him. By entering in a conga line and merrily banging away on the drums, the slaves defused much of the danger. The cross-gendered casting of three of the four courtesans provided additional comedic opportunities to undercut Ballio’s bullying. Through performance, we were able to explore how the “mute” characters, who are easily ignored in a text, can dramatically affect the tone of a scene.