George Orwell’s parable of totalitarianism set on a farm will be shared by the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point’s Department of Theatre and Dance in February, with staged readings of the play on campuses in Marshfield, Stevens Point and Wausau.
“Animal Farm” will be performed at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 9 at UWSP at Marshfield; at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 10 and Feb. 11 at UW-Stevens Point; and at 2 p.m. Feb. 12 at UWSP at Wausau.
Tickets are $10 each and can be purchased online at tickets.uwsp.edu, by calling 715-346-4100 or visiting the Information and Tickets Office in the Dreyfus University Center in Stevens Point. Tickets are also available at each venue starting one hour prior to each performance.
Orwell’s story, written in 1945, is an allegory based on the Russian revolution under Joseph Stalin. It is set on a farm where the animals rebel against the humans to enjoy freedom and equality, but find this is not easily sustained.
During a staged reading, there is no set. Actors read the play as well as the stage directions.
Featuring a cast of 15 student actors, the performance will “push the boundaries of a stationary staged reading,” said director Greg Pragel, a visiting faculty member in the Department of Theatre and Dance. “We want to clearly tell the story, lift it off the page and breathe life into it,” he said.
Movement and physicality, costuming and animal sounds will help the audience see why this story is still being told today, he said. He hopes to elevate the humor further and lean into the storytelling, helping audiences connect with the play as it shifts into its darker messages.
“I hope audiences have a blast with the show, and if they also happen to recognize the animals’ disparity that’s in our own society, then we’ve done our job,” he said.
Source: UW-Stevens Point