The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

Theatre MSU blew audience away with ‘The Tempest’

With the dimming of the lights, the magnificence of the stage and a bombastic introduction, the audience of McComas Hall fell eerily silent. They remained still throughout the entire production, reacting solely with outbursts of awe and gales of laughter.

If you missed this powerful event, great sorrow should befall you. Those fortunate enough to experience this Theatre MSU performance need no validation. Instead, I implore you to pay close attention toward future productions from this powerhouse of theatrical talent.

Theatre MSU’s “The Tempest” displayed deft grace and charm that rocked the audience to their core. A stylistic approach, combined with outstanding visuals and engrossing performances thrusted those in attendance into a fantastic escape.

Words fail to capture the magnificence of this play’s atmosphere. Tim Matheny, assistant professor of Theatre Performance, directed this production to glory worthy of Shakespearean praise.

Written in the early 17th century, “The Tempest” is a play that honors many genres. Offering segments of comedy, drama and romance, there is no set way to encapsulate this tale.

Marooned on an island for 12 years, the deposed duchess of Milan named Prospera lives with her daughter Miranda. A ship carrying Alonso, the king of Naples, and various nobles, wreck in a storm created under the magical art of Prospera. As the men become acquainted with the island, Prospera weighs the choice between power and compassion.

Running on the McComas main-stage from April 11 to April 13, this weekend gave a startling look at one of William Shakespeare’s final plays. Adapted, but not retooled, legitimate commendation must be awarded toward this difficult performance.

It was no easy feat, as the audience and the cast had to overcome linguistically demanding early English. Maintaining the elaborate wordplay and comedic styling, it was impressive how enthralled the audience became within the first few minutes.

Upon intermission, the audience buzzed in an excited murmur. So many questions bubbled between them, demanding their full attention. The re-introduction delighted the patrons, leaving them captivated for the rest of the performance. The final scene was a breathtaking display, leaving a powerfully raw impact that disseminated across the audience.

This cast knocked it out of the park. Even with difficult pronunciation, each cast member exuded passion and captivating emotion. Minor characters got moments to shine, not disappearing behind the shadows of the leads. Facial expressions, character defining gestures and natural delivery came from every performer. No scene trudged along, as the enthusiastic pacing offered brilliance few ever bear witness to.

The entire crew deserves praise, as each department shone through with delicate care and adept skill. The flexible sound design and lighting balanced carefully between explosive enchantments and powerful monologues. Costumes of gorgeous intricacies suited each distinct and vibrant personality.

The stage itself breathed along with musical swells, appearing like a vivid dream from which few would want to wake. An experience such as this rarely ever graces the stage, so this masterful production by our own MSU Theatre deserves every ounce of admiration and applause.

About the Contributor
Brandon Grisham
Brandon Grisham, Former Online Editor
Brandon Grisham served as the Online Editor from 2019 to 2020. He also started The Reflector's digital archive, dubbed the "Grisham Archive Project."
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The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University
Theatre MSU blew audience away with ‘The Tempest’