This week, the cast of Mother Courage was finally able to try on their costumes and rehearse on stage. Only a short time before opening day, the cast is “getting into the spirit” of the play, said Brooke Edwards, director of the play and a theatre professor.
Mother Courage, which opens Nov. 12, is a play written by Bertolt Bretch, a German dramatist and poet famous for his epic theatre. As Bretch’s response to the rise of Fascism and Nazism, the play is set during the 30 Years’ War between Germany and Poland, telling the story of Mother Courage, a canteen woman who is determined to make a living from the war. Unravelling the ironies of war through Mother Courage, the play critiques anyone who wishes to benefit from war. Mother Courage is Bretch’s most famous play, and it is also considered one of the greatest anti-war plays of the 20th century.
“Educationally, every theatre student should be exposed to a play by Bretch because he is a very important part of modern theatre history,” said Edwards, explaining the reason she chose the production. “On the other hand, considering what is going on in the world today with war in general being such a prevalent part of our world and our country and that some parties do make profits out of war, I think it is an important time on college campus for students to think about war and its atrocities as a capitalistic venture,” she added.
In addition, with international students being part of the cast and female students taking on male roles, the play promises to offer a unique, multi-cultural interpretation of the original script.
Edwards is proud of the student-actors for how they have grown throughout the process. “Being part of a play teaches them how to work with each other, and there is a camaraderie within the cast,” she said. “I feel that everybody is really supportive of one another.. On top of that, the students are really challenging themselves with such a hard play, doing things that they have never done before. Every rehearsal, when somebody makes a breakthrough, it is always a wonderful thing to see.”
Mother Courage and Her Children runs two weekends, Nov 14-16 and Nov. 21-22. Shows begin at 7:30 p.m. in Thoresen Theatre. Admission is $10 for general admission and $8 for faculty/staff/alums/seniors. Student admission is $5.
Reserve tickets at www.randolphcollege.edu/tickets or call 434-947-8562 for more information.
Story written by Phuong Tran ’15, a College Relations intern.