Emory Report
August 3, 2009
Volume 61, Number 36


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August 3, 2009
Puppets, politics take Theater Emory stage

By Hunter Hangar

Theater Emory’s upcoming season offers three interpretations of an August Strindberg drama, a new science play, surreal puppets and a Broadway musical. John Ammerman, Theater Emory’s new artistic director, describes the season as “striking a balance between both old and new, original and revival...breaking out and breaking forth, blending artistic views that serve a wide base of interests and tastes.”

Three different simultaneous productions of August Strindberg’s “Miss Julie” (Oct. 1–10) are directed by faculty Janice Akers, Michael Evenden and Donald McManus. Each sheds new light on the Swedish playwright’s 1888 classic that deals with power, lust and class.

Out Of Hand Theater co-produces the world premiere “Hominid” (Nov. 12–22). Based on the true story captured by Emory psychologist and primatologist Frans de Waal in “Chimpanzee Politics,” this tale of murder and greed unfolds like a modern day “Macbeth.” Developed through the Playwriting Center of Theater Emory, with commissioning from Emory College’s Center for Creativity & Arts and Program in Science & Society, “Hominid” is directed by alumna Ariel de Man and co-written by Ken Weitzman.

The highly acclaimed puppet play rendition of Mary Shelley’s classic gothic novel “Frankenstein” (Feb. 18–27) is adapted and directed by the Center for Puppetry Arts’ Jon Ludwig. Originally commissioned and produced for the 1996 Olympic Arts Festival, “Frankenstein” is set in a surreal, musical world of voodoo where horror and humor dance together to the beat of a percussion-based ensemble.

A traditionally staged production of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s American musical “Oklahoma!” (April 1–11) features music by Richard Rodgers, book and lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II, based on the play “Green Grow the Lilacs” by Lynn Riggs, with original dances by Agnes de Mille. Emory faculty Scott Stewart is the musical director and conductor and George Staib choreographs.

For ticket and more information, call 404-727-5050, or visit www.arts.emory.edu.