MCLA Theatre Students Will Produce ANGELS IN AMERICA, Now thru 4/26

MCLA Theatre Students Will Produce ANGELS IN AMERICA, Now thru 4/26

The Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts's (MCLA) Fine and Performing Arts (FPA) department presents Tony Kushner's Pulitzer Prize winning play, "Angels in America." The show debuts at MCLA's Venable Theater tonight, April 15, 16, and 17 at 8:00 p.m., and continues on April 23, 24, 25, and 26 at 8:00 p.m. with an 11:30 a.m. symposium prior to the matinee at 2:00 p.m. on April 26.

"Angels in America" is organized and performed by the Theatre Lab class and directed by Assistant Professor of Theatre, Laura Standley. She, along with her cast, who also serve as the technical crew and administrative team, put together the show from scratch, from envisioning the initial concept to rehearsing the final product.

"Angels in America was certainly an ambitious choice for Theatre Lab, yet we wanted to present ourselves with a chance to overcome the seemingly impossible," said Assistant Director, senior FPA: Theatre major, Jacquelyn Gianetti. "The work is a Pulitzer-Prize winning play and certainly one of the most important pieces of our time."

She continued, "Our production searches for the hopeful aspects of an ever-changing society. It creates a behavioral platform through which the community can potentially examine the difficult decisions of each of the characters."

The play tackles concepts regarding societal progression, social stigma, and the fight for equality. Set during the AIDS crisis in the 1980s, the characters undergo a series of challenges regarding their personal, gender, and sexual identity when race, religion, love, drag culture, and disease play a key role in the struggle for positive change, acceptance and self-discovery.

"Each member of the ensemble brings so many marvelous ideas to the rehearsal space. An experience such as this is extremely important for the young theatre artist because we are learning to develop our own aesthetics and collaboration skills in order to determine how we wish to make the theatre of the future," Gianetti said.

The action will take place in a diorama-like set, emphasizing the show's relationship with history and alternative approaches to theatricality.

"We pictured the characters and the themes of the work existing in historical archives," Gianetti said. The behaviors of each of the characters and the importance of the perspective gained through their decisions will be best represented intimately this way."

Tickets are $10 general admission, $5 for MCLA's faculty and staff, and free for students. Because of the show's intimate setting, seating is limited and reserving tickets in advanced is highly recommended. Patrons can reserve tickets by emailing boxoffice@mcla.edu, or calling 413-662-5123. This show has themes and language that is not appropriate for children.

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