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The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

‘The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe’ makes debut

Oliva Zeringue
Emma Denson and Tim Matheny paint props for the upcoming performance of ‘The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.’


Starting Sept. 25, Mississippi State University’s theatre department will present C.S. Lewis’ “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe” to elementary students of the Golden Triangle area and the general public. 

The theatre program is putting on matinee shows for the elementary schools every day this week as well as a show on Saturday for the general public. 

For most of the students, this is their first opportunity to see a live performance or a live performance of “The Lion, the Witch, And the Wardrobe”.

Theatre Department Director Cody Stockstill is excited to see how the audience responds to the play.

“I am really excited to see their response to the fantasy world, the animal characters, and what happens to those characters since itis a live set rather than a book or movie,” Stockstill said.

At first glance, the performance will appear effortless and perfect, but the audience does not realize the amount of effort and time put into making it flawless. 

Stockstill said this play was more challenging when it came to the preparation, which typically includes building the set, the characters and executing it.

“We wanted a really simplistic sort of world because the story itself is so complicated,” Stockstill said. “We did not want it to confuse the story. We really wanted it to aid in the storytelling.”

Because the theatre department does not have a bottomless budget and copious amounts of time to prepare, a mixture of puppeteers and live action are used to portray the fantasy characters found in the play. According to Stockstill, the preparation process usually takes up to four or five weeks. 

Going behind the scenes, this play seems to have taken an abundance of effort to carry out as compared to other plays. They decided to portray the white witch with a live actress, Aslan is seen as both a combination of live action and puppeteering and the beavers are presented as puppets.

“Do not expect to see Jim Hanson’s Sesame Street puppeteers but more like ‘The Lion King’ on broadway,” Stockstill said. “It’s a puppeteering technique taken from different local traditions.”

As a result of the production being more complex than others, communication has been key with making sure everything flows perfectly. 

The crew began by coming to a consensus on the world they wanted to create, and then they brought that world into being through the casting of characters and the designing of the set. 

Closing any gaps of communication between the actors or between the actors and the entire cast has been crucial to the entire process. Fortunately, Stockstill said communication has been great amongst the team. 

“It is important to make sure we are all moving in the same direction and going toward the same unified vision, which luckily we are because we talk really well together,” Stockstill said.

The audience should expect the play to remain loyal to the book’s presentation of the story. 

“The movie does not do the original book justice,” Stockstill said. “The source material for the play is a faithful adaptation of the book itself meaning all of your favorite characters and all of your favorite scenes will be in the stage play.”

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The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University
‘The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe’ makes debut