This Friday, October 27, the only Shakespeare troupe in West Virginia, The Rustic Mechanicals, will perform at 8 p.m. in Loar Auditorium at West Virginia Wesleyan College as a part of their Forget & Forgive Tour of William Shakespeare’s King Lear.
Admission is by donation, and the event is open to the public. The troupe will be passing the hat to try and recoup some tour expenses, but this means the audience can “Pay What You Will” and see a performance of one of Shakespeare’s greatest tragedies.
King Lear has ruled for many years. As age begins to overtake him, he decides to divide his kingdom amongst his children, living out his days without the burden of power. A proud man, he allows vanity to cloud his judgement, believing that he can relinquish the crown but enjoy the same authority and respect he has always known. Misjudging his children’s loyalty, he soon finds himself stripped of all the trappings of state, wealth, and power he had taken for granted. Alone in the wilderness, he is left to confront the mistakes of a life that has brought him to this point.
The Rustic Mechanicals, now in their fourth season, have grown from a troupe of seven actors to boasting a roster of 25 West Virginia artists this year.
John O’Connor headlines this production in the eponymous role of King Lear, while Sarah Young, Kaici Loar, and Kayla Hudimac play his three daughters, Goneril, Regan, and Cordelia, respectively. James Matthews will play the Lord of Gloucester, and Joshua Clevenger and Travis Teffner will play his sons, Edgar and Edmond. Justin Grown and Sean Marko play the Duke of Albany and the Duke of Cornwall respectively, and rounding out the cast is Ben Brooks, Isaac Covey, and Daniel Crowley as Kent.
Young directs the production with technical direction by David Byard, production design by Trina Byard, fight choreography by James Ricks, and dramaturgy by John Shirley.
For more information, please visit https://www.facebook.com/RusticMechanicals/.