Full CircleGAMBIER, Ohio (February 13, 2006) It's come full circle. Juvenilia, written by James E. Michael Playwright-in-Residence and Associate Professor of Drama Wendy MacLeod, may have premiered in New York City, but the play was conceived in Gambier. Now it's being performed here as well. Juvenilia will enjoy a run in the Hill Theater at 8:00 p.m. on Thursday through Sunday, February 23-26.
Juvenilia--its title is a Latin term referring to the early, immature works of an artist--is set in a dorm at fictional Jubilee College, a small liberal arts institution not unlike Kenyon. The school motto, Puberes ex pueris, which translates roughly as "Adults out of children,"suggests the arc of the play: in the secure incubator that is college life, the characters each search for emotional balance, juggling emergent sexuality, maturity, and morality. Or, as MacLeod explained in a November 2003 interview with Tim Sanford, artistic director of Playwrights Horizons, where the play premiered, it's about "the reality of the college experience."
The production will be directed by Assistant Professor of Drama Daniel Kramer, and senior Samantha Oberstein designed the costumes as part of her senior exercise. Visiting Professor of Drama Hugh Lester designed the lighting and scenery. The action revolves around a quartet of characters played by juniors Claire Fort and Pat Shaw and seniors Max Bunzel and Liz Jacobsen.
MacLeod, Class of 1981, has been teaching at Kenyon since 1990. Juvenilia was inspired by an exercise she assigned to her students in Introduction to Theater class. She instructed them to listen carefully to conversations around them, to capture the rhythm and speech patterns of their peers. An earlier play, The House of Yes, was adapted by director Mark Waters into a 1997 film starring Parker Posey, Tori Spelling, and Freddie Prinze, Jr.
Ticket prices for Juvenilia are $5.00 for general admission; $2.00 for non-Kenyon students, seniors, and children under 12; $2.50 for groups of ten or more with reservations; and $1.00 for Kenyon students. The box office is open from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. Monday, February 20, through Sunday, February 26, and one hour prior to each performance. For more information or to make reservations, call (740) 427-5546.