Tag Archives: Theatre

Play offers witty look at Victorian British society

Junior Kanon Havens (left)  and freshman Cole Curtright perform on March 15. Megan Myer/Online editor

The world of Oscar Wilde’s short story, “Lord Arthur Savile’s Crime,” adapted by playwright Robert Urbinati, came alive under the direction of Elizabeth Rothan, class of ’85, in the premiere of “West Moon Street” on March 15.

Audiences were taken back to the Victorian era and upper-class British society where duty was a priority for gentlemen such as Lord Arthur Savile, played by freshman Cole Curtright, who has a “secret that he kept locked away in his heart.”

The performance kept audiences on their feet with a thick plot, witty lines and eloquently designed period costumes by instructional associate costume designer and shop manager Alethia Moore-del Monaco.

“West Moon Street” received positive comments from Linfield students.

“I love how visually gorgeous the costumes and sets are,” sophomore Caitlyn Olson said.

Freshman Sylvan Tovar said he thought the characters were performed well.

“I liked Lady Windermere [played by freshman Gabrielle Leif]. She was really driven and had unique interests,” he said. “My favorite part was that actors were given a voice, and it was well acted — really well done.”

Curtright said he could easily connect with the lead role of Arthur Savile.

“I think in some aspects I am like my character,” Curtright said. “I can relate to him. He likes to have fun.”

Junior Kanon Havens, who played Sybil Merton, said she felt the opposite about her role.

“I thought I was much more like her when reading the script,” Havens said. “I found out she was bubbly and energetic, but I wasn’t really connecting to the play. She’s not really like me.”

Rothan noted some challenges with the play, including developing the role of the maid, removing the piano player and changing one male role to a female role.

Senior Rachel Westrick, who played Mrs. Podges, said that although Urbinati had to rewrite the play to accommodate these changes, the physical appearances of the characters didn’t matter.

Freshman Jacob Priester, who played Charles the Butler, talked about the significance of plays in general.

“Plays are intimate and audiences can connect with the actors. It’s not edited, and it’s more of a natural experience live,” he said.
For Rothan, the power of plays is that they “reflect life. [They’re] pieces of themselves; [they] inform awareness — in this case, culture, and more compassion and ideas. [They]give an insight into other people’s worlds; [They] take ourselves out of time’ and we all need to laugh.”

Yoko Gardiner can be reached at linfieldreviewculture@gmail.com.

Spring theater season opens with witty play

Freshman Kay Bartlett (far left), feshman Cole Curtwright (sitting in back), senior Rachel Westrick (left side of table), junior Kanon Havens (right side of table), freshman Gabrielle Leif (sitting in back), and junior McKenna Peterson (far right) practice for “West Moon Street” as director Elizabeth Rothan (standing) oversees the rehearsal.  Katie Pitchford/Photo editor

Freshman Kay Bartlett (far left), feshman Cole Curtwright (sitting in back), senior Rachel Westrick (left side of table), junior Kanon Havens (right side of table), freshman Gabrielle Leif (sitting in back), and junior McKenna Peterson (far right) practice for “West Moon Street” as director Elizabeth Rothan (standing) oversees the rehearsal. Katie Pitchford/Photo editor

Students will perform a play based on an Oscar Wilde story at 7:30 p.m. March 15-18 in the Marshall Theater in Ford Hall.

Junior Kanon Havens, who will play the role of Sybil Merton, said that the central conflict of the play, titled, “West Moon Street,” revolves around the character of Lord Arthur fulfilling a task given to him by a palm reader before he is able to get married to the character Sybil.

“It’s very witty,” Havens said. “It’s a play that makes fun of the high class.”

Havens said that she anticipates having fun with the performance and seeing how the audience reacts.

“It’s such a fulfilling feeling to perform and get an honest reaction,” she said.

Freshman Gabrielle Leif, who will play the role of Lady Windermere, said that being involved with the play has been a positive experience so far.

“I think it is going well. It’s one of those things when you get closer and closer, you get nervous, but everything is coming together,” she said.

Leif described the play as a comedy of manners.

“The characters play the role they think they are supposed to be playing, and the show pokes fun at that,” she said.

Leif added that an interesting aspect of the show is its three-ring circus theme. There are two rings painted in the stage, and each side of the stage is a few feet from the audience. The audience will be on all four sides of the stage, she said.

Adjunct professor of Theatre and Communication Arts Elizabeth Rothan, class of ’85, is directing the play.

“I’m hoping that the audience will see a little bit of themselves and understand the sensibilities of a time different from our own,” Rothan said.

The play was written by New York City playwright Rob Urbinati, who conducted a play reading and feedback session with students at Linfield on Feb. 26.

Tickets cost $7 for Linfield faculty, staff and senior citizens; $5 for Linfield students; and $9 at full price.

For more information about the production, contact Elizabeth Rothan at erothan@linfield.edu

Chelsea Bowen/Opinions editor
Chelsea Bowen can be reached at linfieldreviewopinion@gmail.com

Playwright highlights minorities in plays

Katie Pitchford, photo editor

Katie Pitchford, photo editor

The Theatre and Communication Arts Departments hosted New York City-based playwright Rob Urbinati on Feb. 23-26 in Ford Hall. Urbinati delivered a presentation about his Immigrant Voices Project, a program that is meant to educate playwrights about plays on themes pertaining to minorities. Urbinati is the author of the play “West Moon Street,” which Linfield students will perform March 16.

Cast members embrace challenging, comedic roles

The Linfield Department of Theatre and Communication Arts opened its first play of the season, a comedy by Ken Ludwig, titled “Lend Me A Tenor” on Nov. 4 in the Marshall Theatre in Ford Hall.
The play, set in 1934, is about a famous opera singer, Tito Morelli, Il Stupendo, who is supposed to perform at the Cleveland Grand Opera Company for one night.
Saunders, the general manager of the opera company, constantly puts down his employee, Max. When Tito arrives late and sick to the show, Max tries to win his boss’ approval by helping him out and giving him sleeping pills. However, Tito takes too large of a dose and passes out. Saunders and Max think that he overdosed and died.
To get a handle on the situation, Max pretends to be Tito, fooling everyone and filling in for him in the show. Eventually, Tito comes to and is ready to perform.
The rest of the play turns into a confusing scenario of mistaken identity between Tito and Max and the women who pine for them, cast member freshman Ellen Brahe said.
Brahe plays the lead female role, Maggie, who is Max’s girlfriend. Max asks her to marry him, and she says no because she wants to wait. She declined because she is obsessed with Tito and wants to lose her virginity to him, Brahe said.
“Maggie is a busybody; her character is everywhere,” Brahe said. “She wants to charm [Tito] and fall in love.”
This was Brahe’s first formal audition and casting at Linfield and the first time she has ever played a female role in her acting career, she said.
“Playing Maggie has gotten me to open up my femininity,” she said. “It’s been a real journey for me.”
“Lend Me A Tenor” also opened up new experiences for male lead, junior Jeremy Moll, who plays Tito.
“I had to step out of my comfort zone because my character is so energetic, and it was a challenge acting ‘dead,’” Moll said. “This was by far the most in-depth I have been in a role.”
Besides Tito’s drama onstage, there is a lot of action off stage such as, running from the police and getting sick in the bathroom, Moll said.
“It is a great script, and I really enjoyed it,” he said. “It is clever, entertaining and fits together well.”
Other students cast in the play are freshman Jenny Layton; sophomores Chris Forrer, Aaron Granum, Jenaveve Linabery and Claudia Ramirez; and senior Chris Lambert.
Approximately 39 students auditioned for a part in the play; however, there were only eight spots available, Brahe said.
Janet Gupton, associate professor of theatre arts and resident director, chose and directed the play.
“I recommend anyone to watch this play because it is a whimsical comedy,” Brahe said. “The misidentity is a big part of the comical aspect.”
Tickets can be purchased at the Marshall Theatre Box Office by phone, on the Web or in person. General admission is $9; seniors, 62 and over, and Linfield faculty and staff pay $7; and student tickets are $5. Student tickets can be purchased for $3 on Nov. 5.
“Lend Me A Tenor” will be performed Nov. 4-6 and 11-13 at 7:30 p.m. and Nov. 7 at 2 p.m. in the Marshall Theatre in Ford Hall.
For more information about purchasing tickets, visit www.linfield.edu/arts-and-culture.html.

Jessica Prokop/Culture editor
Jessica Prokop can be reached at linfieldreviewculture@gmail.com

Theater program cleans out its costume closet

Alethia Moore-DelMonaco, instructional associate, costume designer and costume shop manager, organizes one of the costume pieces during the theater programs first Halloween Costume Sale on Oct. 21. Katie Paysinger/Senior photographer

Linfield held its first costume sale Oct. 21 in Ford Hall.
Costume shop manager Alethia Moore-Del Monaco said that the idea for the costume sale arose because costume storage in Mahaffey Hall needed to be re-organized and cleaned out.
Moore-Del Monaco said that she followed two criteria to help her choose which costumes to sell. She would keep them if, first, the costumes were safe for the actors to wear on stage again and, second, if they were specific to a particular show.
The costumes at the sale are priced from $1 to $20.
“I’m trying to keep it affordable for students,” Moore-Del Monaco said.
Some of the items for the costume sale include a number of unique Greek garments and a variety of hats, shoes, jackets and dresses from past productions.
“There’s a really interesting tree costume that I’m happy to see go,” Moore-Del Monaco said, referring to an elaborate green costume made to look like a bunch of leaves.
Senior Steven Stewart has been working in the theater costume shop for more than a year, and he is the costume coordinator for the sale.
One item from the sale that Stewart is excited to purchase is a blue glittery rhinestone jacket that he plans to use as part of his Lady Gaga costume.
“To see what people choose to mix together and what people are drawn to will be exciting,” Stewart said.
Freshman Gabrielle Leif said she was drawn to the costume sale because it was a way for her to find a costume without having to look off campus.
“It is a bunch of stuff from old shows, so I thought I’d find something fun and unique,” Leif said. “I just heard about it, and I was curious to see what they have.”
Moore-Del Monaco said the sale isn’t about turning a profit.
“If we make a little money, great, but at least students will have had the experience of coordinating a costume,” Moore-Del Monaco said.
For more information about the costume sale, contact Moore-Del Monaco at amoored@linfield.edu.
The costume sale will also run from 3-6 p.m. Oct. 22 in Ford Hall.

Chelsea Bowen/Opinion editor
Chelsea Bowen can be reached at linfieldreviewopinion@gmail.com.