The Farquhar College of Arts and Sciences’ Division of Performing and Visual Arts put on William Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night, Or What You Will” April 8-10. It also showed April 15-17 in the Black Box Theatre.
The setting of the Black Box Theatre brought the actors nearly within reach of the audience. Every scene’s opening cue was spot on and intimate with the audience. Shakespeare’s frequent soliloquies were ushered to the audience as closely as they were following the lost Viola themselves.
Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night” follows Viola after she endures a shipwreck that parts her from her twin brother Sebastian. What follows is a series of comedic events that tie Viola in a knot of town affairs.
Due to the complexity of Shakespeare, the Performing and Visual Arts rarely put on a Shakespeare play, but when they do they make sure to get it right. The leading role of Viola was played by Karla Zamor, sophomore theatre major, who delivered her role well, not missing the comedy in the desperate and romantically complex conditions. Her character confronts as a female acting as a male. Shakespeare’s gender bending is delivered well.
The Performance Wing’s track record includes such successes as “Ruthless!,” “The Importance of Being Earnest,” and “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” “Twelgth Night, or What You Will” is no exception. Directed by Margaret M. Ledford, the play maintains the same high-quality displayed in the past.
Ledford’s goal was achieved in all aspects of the characters. All of the supporting actors performed well, which is a testament to the directing, including Black Box veterans Chris Waggoner, sophomore theatre major, Jonathan Sanz, senior theatre and music major and Jody-Ann Henry, senior theatre major.
Monica Lynne Herera, senior triple major in theatre, music and communication studies, took her first role since “Ruthless!” She played the haughty and con-ceited romantic noblewoman Olivia expertly with no restraint shown toward Viola or Sebastian.
Newcomer Wallace Jean, sophomore theatre major, handled the role of Sebastian well along with veteran Edward Marks, senior theatre major, who played Antonio. Even the wenches and servants played a memorable part. Gentlewoman Maria played her role with diabolic wit that endears her to victims.
Overall the play was highly entertaining. It solidified another milestone of Black Box Theatre excellence. Children, as well as adults, laughed at some of the slapstick jokes. If you missed the Twelfth Night in the Black Box Theatre don’t miss out on the next performance. Check with the box office for the Performing and Visual Arts Wing on the north side of the Don Taft University Center for tickets.