California Baptist University’s theater program will present its second show this fall, “Life is a Dream,” starting Nov. 14. The show also runs the 15th at 7:30 p.m., the 20th and 21st at 7:30 p.m., and the 22nd at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
The production is directed by Elizabeth Malone, assistant professor of theater. Spenser Scott Deardorff, senior theater and history double major, stars as the main character, Segismundo.
“This character is a definite stretch for me,” Deardorff said.
In the play, Segismundo is prophesied to destroy the kingdom and kill his father, the king. To prevent this, his father has him put in jail at birth, and Segismundo remains there for 20 years. Segismundo struggles with this prophesy and his place in life.
When his father has a change of heart and releases Segismundo, Segismundo goes on a violent rampage. Devastated at his son’s actions, the king locks his son back in prison. Once the people of the kingdom find out that they have a natural-born heir to the kingdom, they start a revolution to get Segismundo into power.
In this period of unrest, Segismundo must confront his past and let go of his violence. He assumes leadership of the revolution and then is called on to fight his father.
Deardorff describes the play as having a “pretty powerful message” and encourages all students to see it.
“Life is a Dream” is Deardorff’s third play. To prepare for the lead role, Deardorff said he does a lot of memorization.
A typical rehearsal starts off with reading the script with his fellow actors and actresses. The performers then run through scenes and eventually run through the full show.
Malone also puts in her fair share of work a the director.
“This play is like putting together an intricate puzzle and often wondering if you will find the missing piece,” Malone said.
Malone said she has enjoyed the challenge of directing this play and collaborating with the visual arts program to make the play come to life.
“I have had to communicate my vision throughout the process,” Malone said. “But the most important part of collaborations is the growth, and I see that in myself and in my cast.”