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‘Twelfth Night’ takes a new spin

Shakespeare’s classic comedy is set in 1920s.

Rebecca Bravo
Staff Writer

William Shakespeare’s classic comedy “Twelfth Night,” which opened last night, should delight audience members.

The show is set in the roaring ’20s.

“Shakespeare is … meant to be seen on stage,” said Stephanie Aguilar who plays the leading role of Viola.

Viola is a woman who is shipwrecked and stranded on the shores of Illyria. She disguises herself as a man to protect herself.

The story takes place at a sunset party on the beach of Illyria with a stage set designed by Adam Flemming.

“The set is great,” said Jordan Randall, who plays the role of Duke Orsino, Viola’s boss.

“There’s actual sand and actual grass to add to the realness of the performance.” Randall added.

Viola ends up falling in love with Orsino but is unable to reveal she is in reality a woman.

“It’s really fun to play those extremes of Viola, who has to be like a man but can’t help being a woman,” Aguilar said.

The cast rehearsed for over a month and a half with the first week dedicated to sitting down and understanding the language of the script that can sometimes be difficult to comprehend.

“Our goal is to make sure the audience understands us so we (actors) have to understand the words completely before we’re able to do that,” said Aguilar.

“Twelfth Night” is directed by guest director Curtis Krick who is an avid attendee to La Verne performances.

“It was so interesting to come in and audition and Curtis knew exactly what roles and what plays I was in before,” Aguilar said.

“We thought it would be a great experience to have someone outside of school direct one of our productions,” said Melody Rahbari, spokeswoman for the theater arts department.

“It’s fun to get fresh blood,” said Kevin Greene who plays Feste, the clown character in the story.

“We’re going to be working with new people all the time.” he said.

Actors in this play are using this experience to develop their acting skills and to help them attain future goals.

“I want to be a high school drama teacher and this gives me experience in so many ways,” Greene said.

The 1920s setting for “Twelfth Night” is comedic with the themes of jealousy, mistaken identity and a dueling scene.

Performances are 7:30 p.m. tonight and tomorrow, as well as April 29-30 and May 1, and it will close with a 2 p.m. matinee on May 2.

Rebecca Bravo can be reached at rebecca.bravo@laverne.edu.

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