The Salem witch
trials of 1692 come to life in “The Crucible,” staged by the Department of
Theatre and Dance at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point Feb. 28-March 2
and March 6-8.
A Tony Award winner written by Arthur Miller
in 1952 as an allegory for Senator Joseph McCarthy’s anti-communism tactics, “The
Crucible” is a tense, spine-tingling play exposing the power of fear in
society. In this fictionalized account of the historic trials, several young
women are caught participating in a Pagan practice.
Accusations of witchcraft begin to fly and the adults in town are pulled into a
deception that ends in tragedy.
“The Crucible” will
be performed in Jenkins Theatre in the Noel Fine Arts Center, 1800 Portage St.,
at 7:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, Feb. 28 and March 1, and Thursday through
Saturday, March 6-8. A 2 p.m. matinee will be performed Sunday, March 2.
Admission is $19
for adults, $18 for senior citizens and $14 for youth. UW-Stevens Point student
tickets are $4.50 or free the day of the show. Tickets are available at the
Information and Tickets Office in the Dreyfus University Center, http://tickets.uwsp.edu, or by calling 715-346-4100 or 800-838-3378.
“The play asks, ‘What does it take to stand
up in the face of fear?’” said its director, Assistant Professor Jared Hanlin
of the Department of Theatre and Dance. “The people of Salem were trying to build
a godly civilization
while surrounded by the
destructive forces of the natural environment, which they believed to be the
stronghold of their supernatural enemy – the Devil. Beset on
all sides by fear, they tried to
circle the wagons to
survive – only to turn on each
student cast members explore both the physical and emotional nature of the
story, Hanlin said. “It’s wonderful to see them digging deeper into their
characters at rehearsals every night.” Cast members will wear period costumes
from the late 17th century, and perform in a set that blends the inside
and outside spaces to reflect how the environment is closing in on the
townspeople and inciting their fear.
A special matinee will be performed for
students from area high schools on Wednesday, March 5, providing an excellent
opportunity to see history and literature come alive, Hanlin said.