UT to stage Shakespeare’s ‘The Tempest’ as theatre in the round

April 4, 2018 | Arts, Events, UToday, Alumni, Arts and Letters, Judith Herb College of Education
By Angela Riddel

The University of Toledo Department of Theatre and Film will stage Shakespeare’s “The Tempest” in the round when it presents the play Friday through Sunday, April 6-8 and 13-15, in the Center for Performing Arts Center Theatre.

Dr. Edmund Lingan, professor and chair of theatre and film, will direct the play.

Student cast members rehearsed a scene from “The Tempest.”

“The Tempest” is Shakespeare’s last play and one of his shortest. Lingan said audiences can expect a light, comic treatment of the work that is suitable for all ages.

The plot of the play centers on Prospero, the duke of Milan, and his daughter who find themselves trapped on a deserted island after having been abandoned by his enemies at sea. Among their few provisions are some books on magic, which Prospero calls upon to help him exact his revenge.

Lingan said some believe that the character, Prospero, one of the most famous magicians in all of English literature, was based on the real-life John Dee, astrologer to Queen Elizabeth I of England. Dee, along with Edward Kelley, is credited with creating Enochian magic, a system of ceremonial magic that also featured a secret language Dee and Kelley claimed to have received from angelic visions.

UT’s production of “The Tempest” is set upon a circular rotating stage that is designed as a magician’s magic circle and features symbols described in Dee’s Enochian manuscripts.

The play also will feature choreography developed by UT alumna Won Hee Kim and original music composed by Scott Hunt, a faculty member of the UT Music Department, who received his master’s degree in music from the University in 2017.

The cast features UT students Kurt T. Elfering, a junior majoring in religious studies, as Prospero; Faith Murphy, a sophomore theatre major, as Caliban; Kenzie N. Phillips, a junior majoring in theatre with a minor in environmental science, as Ariel; Becca M. Lustic, a sophomore theatre major, as Miranda; Michael R. Miller, a sophomore majoring in bioengineering, as Ferdinand; Josh Keidan, a doctoral student in the Judith Herb College of Education, as Gonzalo/Spirit/Reaper; Kevin Upham, a junior theatre major with a minor in visual arts, as Antonio/Spirit/Reaper; Bryan Harkins, a senior theatre major, as Sebastian/Spirit/Reaper; Drew Michael Young, a senior theatre major, as Alonso (King)/Spirit/Reaper; Hanna L. Gerlica, a sophomore majoring in pharmacy, as Francisco/Master of the Ship/Spirit; Shaquira Jackson, a junior majoring in theatre performance, as Ceres/Boatswain/Spirit; Alexis Johnson, a senior theatre major, as Adrian/Iris/Spirit; Michael James Vanderpool, a senior majoring in theatre with a minor in music, as Trinculo/Spirit; David Wanhainen, a philosophy major, as Stefano/Spirit; and Emily E. Meyer, a senior majoring in theatre with a minor in Japanese, as Spirit.

Rounding out the cast are Keely-Rain Battle, a 2015 alumna who received a bachelor of arts degree in theatre, as Juno/Spirit, and Grace E. Mulinix, a student at Toledo Early College High School, as Spirit.

Making it happen behind the scenes are Daniel Thobias, assistant professor of theatre, set designer; Katelyn Justice, freshman theatre major, assistant set designer; Caribbea Danko-McGhee, 2013 UT alumna who received a bachelor of arts degree in theatre, as props designer/master; Stephen Sakowski, assistant professor of theatre, as lighting/sound designer; Ryan Peters-Hieber, junior theatre major with design and tech concentration, assistant lighting designer and associate sound designer; Holly Monsos, associate dean of the College of Arts and Letters, and professor of theatre, costume designer; Logan Fleming, freshman theatre major, assistant costume designer; Sean P. Freeman, a sophomore majoring in economics, stage manager; and Emily R. Wemple, English major with a minor in theatre and Spanish, assistant stage manager.

Tickets are $8 for students and children; $10 for UT faculty, staff and alumni, and military members and seniors; and $15 for the general public. Call 419.530.ARTS (2787) or order online at utoledo.tix.com. Tickets also will be available at the door. 

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