The Southwestern College theatre department’s Homecoming production of Bertolt Brecht’s “The Good Woman of Setzuan” will be performed Thursday, Oct 10, at 7:30 p.m.; Friday, Oct. 11, at 8 p.m.; and Sunday, Oct. 13, at 2 p.m. The cast will be joined by some extra cast members in their show: puppets.
The ensemble cast will be incorporating large to larger-than-life-sized puppets for a number of their ensemble characters, designed by cast member and head of puppets, sophomore Emily Tilton.
“There are a total of 15 puppets, all life size except the gods, who will be larger than life,” Tilton says. “The puppets will be realistic, based off the humans portraying them. The ensemble members will have puppet versions of themselves. The puppets will be used throughout the show by all members of the ensemble.”
The cast members themselves are excited about the rare chance to use this unique device in their performance.
“My favorite part is making an inanimate object come to life,” says Southwestern College junior Shane Schrag about his use of the puppets in the show.
However, an addition as significant as the puppets does not come without difficulties. Schrag added that acting with a puppet and making it feel realistic and natural was his biggest challenge.
“They are extremely heavy,” mentioned senior Juliette Lowrance, another puppeteer in the ensemble. “When you have to carry that weight while maintaining the physical nature of a character such as an old woman or a pregnant sister-in-law, it’s difficult.”
The show will be presented in Messenger Recital Hall in Darbeth Fine Arts Center on the Southwestern College campus. For tickets or more information call the Southwestern College box office at (620) 221-7720 or (620) 229-6171. Information is also available on the Southwestern theatre webpage, www.sckans.edu/theatre.