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On the Verge's production of THE DUCHESS OF MALFI will feature a cast of faculty members (Greg Bostwick, Chrystyna Dail, Paul Hansom, Dan Breen); students (Lily Waldron, Will Champion, Cam Wenrich, Danielle Newmark, Adam David, Usman Ishaq, Conor Shatto); and local professional actors and members of the Ithaca community (Arthur Bicknell, Samuel Holmes, Geneva Matusiak). It was directed by Claire Gleitman (English), and assistant directed and stage managed by Theatre Arts students Danica Kelley and TJ Lyons, respectively.

THE DUCHESS OF MALFI, written by the Jacobean playwright John Webster and first performed ca. 1613, dramatizes the anxieties unleashed in a misogynistic culture by the prospect of a woman in power. Put in those terms, it might seem quite timely in our own moment. The Duchess of Malfi is a character who firmly believes that she has a right to carve out the private life she desires without relinquishing her claim to power. Many of the Duchessís choices violate the expected codes for females in her society, including her indifference to rank in her choice of husbands and the unabashed pleasure she takes both in her status as Duchess and in her sexual life. That the result for her is tragedy does not mean that the play colludes with its charactersí rampant misogyny. On the contrary, the Duchess seems to be a moral bulwark, in her corrupt society, against the general anarchy and savagery into which Malfi tumbles when she is gone. (There will be an additional performance of THE DUCHESS on Wednesday the 16th for a smaller audience; contact Claire Gleitman at gleitman@ithaca.edu for details.)

ON THE VERGE AND THURSDAYS AT THE HANDWERKER PRESENT a staged reading of John Websterís THE DUCHESS OF MALFI, on THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 17th, at 6 p.m. in the Handwerker Gallery. | 0 Comments |
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