November 13, 2006

The cast of "Miss Julie"

LEWISBURG, Pa. — The Bucknell University department of theatre and dance will present three performances of August Strindberg's play, "Miss Julie," Nov. 17, 18 and 19 at 8 p.m. in the Tustin Studio Theatre. Tickets to the senior acting recital are $2 per person.

Set in rural Sweden on Midsummer's Eve, "Miss Julie" explores developmental delay, the battle of the sexes and social mores, concluding in the first theatrical example of what playwright Strindberg called "psychic murder," or the process by which an individual's capacity for love and joy is destroyed.

"Miss Julie" stars Bucknell senior theatre majors Andy Nogasky as Jean and Mallory Sweeney as Miss Julie, and features Bucknell senior Flor De Liz Perez as Kristin. The performance is directed by visiting artist Leigh Strimbeck.

Independent theatre project

Performed as part of an Independent Theatre project and honors thesis, the production endeavors to relate a period piece to a contemporary audience. The actors draw contemporary comparisons ranging from topics such as unhealthy dependent relationships and discrimination through ignorance. Despite all the characters' bids for power through status and morality, wealth and propriety, as well as what one could consider a tragic ending, the plot focuses on an issue that is central to any college campus - independence.

Nogasky and Sweeney collaborated on the production while studying in London and Ireland respectively: Nogasky at the London Dramatic Academy and Sweeney at the Gaiety  School of Acting. Their production of "Miss Julie" includes a small cast, a wide variety of acting challenges, and a project which would explore and showcase their specific talents as senior theatre majors.

Guest director Strimbeck, who teaches at SUNY Albany, also has been with the Bloomsburg Theatre Ensemble for 12 years. She was co-writer and director of Berwick, America and This House Builded, both history plays commissioned by their communities. She also is a teaching artist for the Capital Region Center for Arts in Education, and a communications coach for the New York State Defender’s Institute.    

Faculty advisers for the production were Gary Grant, dramaturgy and research; Bob Gainer, rehearsal supervision; Elaine Williams and Heath Hansum, scenography and technology; as well as costume design intern Emily Ganfield and senior design student Christopher North.

[photo by Chris Stokes]

Posted Nov. 13, 2006

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