Hillsdale College’s Tower Players invite all students to audition this Wednesday and Thursday for this year’s fall production that will revive a nearly 2,500 year-old Greek theater tradition.
Written originally by the ancient Greek playwright Aeschylus in 458 B.C., Hillsdale College students and theater faculty will perform “The Eumenides.” Chairman of theater George Angell said he plans to stay true to the original and put on a production filled with authentic period mask-work and choral interludes from mythological creatures.
“I have wanted to do ‘The Eumenides’ for years, for lots of reasons,” Angell said. “It may seem odd to do the final part of a trilogy as a stand-alone production, but there are lots of fun and interesting things about it. We are keeping the play set in Greek times, though a kind of Greek that is filtered through our modern sensibilities — a kind of animé Greek, if you will.”
The Eumenides features a dramatis personae of well-known characters from Greek mythology, including Apollo, Clytemnestra, and Orestes, a cast that students will bring to life on stage during their early-October performances. But the lead role has already been filled by senior Dani Morey, who will take the stage as Athena to complete the requirements for the final project of her theater major. Morey said she is both nervous and nostalgic for her last fall theater production, but is excited to play the title role.
“I’m a bit nervous, because I’m a huge mythology nerd, especially about ancient Greek stuff,” Morey said. “So I’m honored and intimidated to get to bring Athena to life. I read the first two plays in the cycle in my freshman English class, so it’s also fitting to get to live out the last part during my last year here.”
Junior Nikoli Dignoti has performed in five Tower Players productions and said Angell’s productions mix traditional elements with new age ideas.
“George’s productions are always exciting to be in,” Dignoti said. “His creativity when setting the themes of his productions always allows for a lot of fun twists on classical plays.”
While Morey said she is sad to wrap up her theater career this season, she is excited for auditions and for the Tower Players to find new and eager performers.
“Facebook just notified me that three years ago today I was auditioning for my first show here. It’s crazy. But good crazy,” Morey said. “I’ve had a lot of great opportunities here, and I’m excited for the freshmen and underclassmen to get to step up and take over.”
Auditions begin at 6:30 p.m. this Wednesday and Thursday in the Quilhot Black Box at the Sage Center for the Arts.