CLU invited to regional theater festival

Students to stage production for 3rd consecutive year

Matthew Case plays Talthybius and Kelie McIver is Hecuba in "The Trojan Women."

Photo: Brian Stethem

(THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – Dec. 21, 2012) California Lutheran University has been invited to stage one of its productions at the prestigious Region VIII Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival for the third consecutive year.

The Theatre Arts Department will present “The Trojan Women” twice on Feb. 14 at the Los Angeles Theatre Center. Only seven of the finest college productions from Southern California, Arizona, Guam, Hawaii, Nevada and Utah were chosen for the honor. This is the fourth time a CLU production has been selected.

Judges will select four to six of the best and most diverse productions from the eight regional conferences to be showcased at the national festival at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. The 45-year-old program is designed to encourage, recognize and celebrate works produced in college theater programs.

CLU staged “The Trojan Women,” which was originally written by Euripides and adapted by Jean-Paul Sartre, in November under the direction of Michael J. Arndt, a theatre arts professor and Vietnam combat veteran. The production is set in what appears to be a modern bomb crater, which is overlooked by a modern, sterile structure where Poseidon and Athene dispassionately discuss the devastation of war.

The female actors representing the chorus and the principal Trojan Women stand for various victims of war including survivors of the Holocaust, women of the Bosnian/Serbian conflict, mothers whose children were secretly abducted or imprisoned by Latin American regimes and Rwandan victims of tribal rape and genocide. Each cast member researched the story of a specific victim of war and created a character based on her as well as one of the women of Troy.

Armed guards patrol throughout the production, making audience members into formal witnesses to the plight of the women.