An Ideal Play: PNC Students Reenact Wilde’s, “An Ideal Husband”
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Oscar Fingal O’Flahertie Wills Wilde, late-19th Century Victorian-era writer, was known for pushing the envelope with his works. Born October 16, 1854 in Dublin, Wilde is known for such works as The Picture of Dorian Gray, The Importance of Being Earnest, and An Ideal Husband. While not publically accepted because he was homosexual, Wilde’s work greatly contributed to the Aesthetic movement. Predecessors of the Aesthetics included John Keats and Percy Bysshe Shelley. Britain offered its best representatives in the forms of Oscar Wilde and Algernon Charles Swinburne.
One of Wilde’s more critical plays, An Ideal Husband, is an 1895 comedic stage play which rotates around blackmail, extortion, political corruption, and touches on the themes of public and private honor. The play also includes both political and domestic-sphered relationships and the growing role of women in society. Wilde’s imagination will leave you awestruck. Honesty and deceit plague the lines of the text, but offer a way to combat the onslaught of hypocrisy. As quoted from the character Robert Chiltern, “You have to fight the century with its own weapons.”
Mark your calendars, everyone. On April 5th at 8:00 p.m., Main Street Theater in Michigan City will host Wilde’s An Ideal Husband. Be sure to come support PNC and watch the lights shine on the cast and crew.
For Dr. Bethany Lee, continuing lecturer of English, this venue allows for students to really come to life in their roles. “We have a really good group this time. Everyone is very involved, dedicated, and works hard. This production requires anywhere from 5-10 hours of rehearsal time in the beginning weeks to around 20 hours in the few weeks preceding opening night,” Dr. Lee explains during an interview. “I’m very excited to work at Main Street Theater. We get full use of the lights, soundboard, and even our very own stage,” she adds with a smile. Bethany has been involved in a number of plays since her arrival in 2010, including: God of Carnage, The Laramie Project, and a number of evening ‘one act’ plays.
Sarah Dwight, senior and English major at PNC (and also my woman crush), explained during an interview earlier on in the production, “This is a comical play that has plenty of undertones and helps reinforce the struggle of women and men in Victorian Society. This will be a fun event for all.”
Opening night for An Ideal Husband is April 5th at the Main Street Theater, located at 807 Franklin Street in Michigan City. The dates are as follows:
Saturday April 5th @ 8:00pm
Sunday April 6th @ 3:00pm
Friday April 11th @ 8:00pm
Saturday April 12th @ 8:00pm
General admission is $10, but only $5 for students who show an I.D.
Now imagine this play, written and performed in 1895, set in motion by our friends119 years later. This play promotes higher education and progressive ideals. This production has been carefully rehearsed to the minutest detail. What other reason would you need? Come enjoy the excitement!