Classic Story Marks Inaugural Production of Theatre’s Young Company
By Kris Ketonen
A literary classic will come to life on the Magnus Theatre stage this month. In its inaugural production, Magnus Theatre’s Young Company—a theatre training program aimed at students aged 13 to 18—will perform Mary Shelley’s timeless tale, Frankenstein.
“It doesn’t stray too far from the story of the novel,” says Danielle Chandler, director of both the Frankenstein production and Magnus Theatre in Education. “You will find some of the stuff that might be a little bit more adult-heavy has been cut.”
“It seems like a really apt choice for teens, because it deals with a lot of themes that are relevant to them,” she adds. “It’s about the search for yourself, and it’s also about, kind of, how technology fits in to one’s life. Which is funny, because it’s from 200 years ago—that’s more relevant than ever now, I would say.”
One of the actors appearing in the production is Walker Lucchese, 15, who portrays Captain Robert Walton. “My character is, you could say, the narrator,” Lucchese says. “He interacts with the story as it’s being told.” Lucchese admits he wasn’t too familiar with the story prior to beginning work on the play. “I’ve always kind of strayed from horror. I’ve always been a huge fan of fantasy, and slaying dragons and knights and everything.” But Lucchese has certainly come around on the story: “It’s been such an enjoyable experience acting in it,” he says.
As for the creature itself, at the time of her interview, Chandler said designs were still being finalized. She did, however, give a bit of a hint as to what theatre-goers can expect from the iconic, and tragic, character—think more Benedict Cumberbatch than Boris Karloff. “It’s kind of just a man that’s been stitched together,” she says. “That’s sort of what I envision, but it always morphs.”
Frankenstein also stars Joshua Audley, Sidne Hare Hodgins, Thomas Jerome,
Will Jerome, David Mackinnon, Brook Malone, Sara Miller, Raija Myllymaa, Andi Shelswell, and Madison Steadwell.
Performances will take place at 7 pm on June 7 and 8. Tickets are $10, and available through Magnus Theatre.