by PAUL BICKLEY
It’s the end of the world, if one is to believe the 2019–20 Ivy Tech Student Productions theater season.
“Student Productions provides a safe place for us to question the world, to explore unsafe ideas, and to do these collectively,” says Paul Daily, artistic director of the Ivy Tech John Waldron Arts Center, 122 S. Walnut. “In many ways, we’re facing a metaphorical end of the world—whether environmentally, politically, or socially—and we hope something better will grow out of that end.”
The season starts with Samuel Beckett’s Endgame (1957), on the Rose Firebay stage August 30 and 31. Here, an unidentified apocalyptic catastrophe has occurred, and Hamm, a cruel son and master; Clov, his servant; and Hamm’s elderly parents have survived together. Looking outside, Clov sees virtually no signs of life. There is no longer a tide, no longer trees or leaves. Everything appears merely gray. Wearied by his master, Clov threatens to leave the group, all of whom depend on him.
November 21–23, an 18-piece orchestra brings Indiana University professor of composition Don Freund’s 2018 Star-Cross’d Lovers: A Shakespearean Music Drama, to the Whikehart Auditorium. “The play includes a terrible end of the world for the lovers’ parents; I don’t imagine there’s a worse one for parents,” says Daily, the father of three. “Don Freund’s score is the first time Romeo and Juliet has been adapted musically with Shakespeare’s text. It’s certainly a rare opportunity for the college as well as the actors and production team.”
José Rivera’s 1993 Obie Award winner Marisol concludes the season April 10–18 in the Rose Firebay. While Marisol Perez thanks God for her good Manhattan job and Bronx neighborhood, her world is changing: a new plague is killing people, the sky is never blue, the moon has disappeared, and people have become more violent. Because God has become senile, the universe is unraveling—and the angels have gone to war against him. As New York deteriorates further under the war above, Marisol realizes she must take a stand.
“Every single show is challenging—artistically, logistically, and philosophically,” Daily says. “This season promises to be our largest yet. People will see what Ivy Tech Student Productions is truly capable of.”
For more information, visit magbloom.com/ivytech-sp.