Theater-by-the-Grove’s production of The Crucible is a hot ticket during this recent cold spell.
Audiences have been larger than usual as hundreds of students, faculty, and community members have gathered to see Arthur Miller’s play about a New England village that erupts in hysteria as false accusations of witchcraft turn into perceptions of reality.
Miller’s analogue to political polarization of the McCarthy era Senate and House hearings on “Unamerican Activities” rings true in today’s polarized political atmosphere of “values testing.” However, the deeper, more universal human truths explored in this production are probably what make it such a hit.
The passionate performances are accompanied by a surreal, visual world of lighting and sound shrouded in a misty haze.
Director Jason Chimonides’ artistic investigation of the psychological motives in The Crucible have provided the groundwork for incredibly vital and passionate performances by the actors. When senior Theater major Chris Anthony, playing John Proctor, cries out, “Because it is my name!” one can come to understand human love and pride and honor in that moment of his hero’s journey, because the psychological underpinning of the characters has been so well constructed throughout.
Tickets remain available for performances on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights (February 24–26, 2011) at 8:00 in Waller Hall of the IUP Performing Arts Center. They may be purchased at IUPtickets.com, the HUB Box Office, or at the door up to forty-five minutes before curtain.
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