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Lead roles in Shakespeare play are new students
Many of the lead roles in Central Wyoming College’s production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream are first-semester freshman.
“That’s not going to happen at a big school,” said director Mike Myers, who has cast 31 actors to stage the Shakespeare comedy Nov. 11-13 and Nov. 18-20 on the Robert A. Peck Arts Center stage.
“We use students in ways other schools wouldn’t even consider,” he said, explaining one student has written original music to go with Shakespeare’s lyrics, another is a dialect coach and one more is doing the choreography.
“I don’t think there are very many schools where students get the kinds of responsibilities that they get here,” Myers said, noting that many of his theater students are taking as many as 24 credits each semester because they have dual majors.
Hippolyta, the queen of the Amazons and betrothed to Theseus, is played by Quincy Cowell, a new student from Star Valley. Theseus, the king of Athens is Pat Bergin, a new theater major though he’s directed and written pieces for the 2011 Student Showcase and the recent production of “Four (or more) in 24.”
The other four leads are Hermia, played by Molly Thornton, who is also the dialect coach; Lysander who is played by Kiah Mills, a new music major from Riverton; Demetrius, who is Rusty Burr, a new theater major from Sheridan; and Helena, a role given to a new theater major from Colorado, Amanda Hessler.
Lander community actor Ed Novotny is Oberon, the king of the fairies, and Titania, queen of the fairies, is theater-music major Jeannie Robbins who also has composed music to go with Shakespeare’s lyrics in Midsummer. She has a brief potion-induced love for Nick Bottom, who is being portrayed by Josiah Sifuentes. Oberon’s mischievous jester Puck is played by Aaron King, a theater major from Riverton.
Other supernatural characters are played by Hannah Osborne, who is also doing the show’s properties, Kim Baxter, Racheal Miller, Briana Burlingham, Dawn Bennett, Amanda Galitz, the show’s choreographer; Dani Hardison, Tamara LaJeunesse, Bronwynn Wright, Sophie Acuna and Maille Gray. The Changeling Boy is Matthew Gray and Satyr is Nathaniel Esposito.
Cast as craftsmen, who act a play-within-play to celebrate the marriage of Theseus and Hippolyta, are John Pedersen, who is the main theater technician for the show; Ted Haworth, Cody Mock, Andrew Knutsen and Taylar Stagner.
Dave Geible of Lander returns to the Arts Center stage as Egeus, the father of Hermia who is forcing her to marry Demetrius, and student Nate Murdoch is Philostrate.
Nov. 11 and 12 and Nov. 18 and 19 shows begin at 7:30 p.m. The Nov. 13 and Nov. 20 productions are 2:30 p.m. matinees. Tickets are $8 for adults and $6 for seniors and students. CWC students can reserve complimentary tickets.