The College of Performing and Visual Arts began with a bang (or rather, a continuous pounding of sticks on the ground) as the actors and actresses performed Coriolanus. The show’s opening night was this Thursday, Sept. 26, held at the Englestad Shakespeare Theatre at 7:30 p.m.
As a member of the audience ready to see another boring Shakespeare play, I was met with an unexpected surprise. The loud rallying of the rowdy commoners and the shouting of main character Coriolanus kept me awake all night long.
The bright red and grey costumes were eye-catching as the actors and actresses battled, twirled and fought on stage. In contrast, the commoners simple attire matched with knee-high black boots was also intriguing.
As for the acting, it was clear that the CPVA students were passionate about the performance. It would be easy to attribute the yelling, pumping of fists and marching around to Shakespeare’s writing and the play itself. However, the feeling portrayed through the acting was absolutely unmistakable and could only be credited to the hard-working students themselves.
Coriolanus is said to be “Shakespeare’s Roman war tragedy,” highlighting the unrest and power struggle between the government and the people. In the Dramaturgy Note found on the program, Alexis Brule says that Coriolanus is a play still relevant today.
Brule provides examples of this, bringing in examples such as the Santa Cruz May Day Riot of 2010, which “(caused) hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of destruction.”
I felt not only for the starving commoner people, but for Coriolanus, who willingly put herself at risk for her country and donning battle wounds, only to be, well. . . I won’t spoil it for you.
In summary, go see this show! Ticket prices are $10 for adults and $5 for students and children. However, SUU faculty, staff and students are admitted free to the performance with a valid student I.D. Held at the Englestad Shakespeare Theatre each night, the play is located next to SUMA. It will be held on Sept. 28, 30, and Oct. 4, at 7:30 p.m. each night.
Story by: Elizabeth Armstrong
Photo by: Elizabeth Armstrong