La Sierra to stage “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe”
Nov. 28, 2012
By Darla Martin Tucker
RIVERSIDE, Calif. – (www.lasierra.edu) With a cast and crew of 60, La Sierra University’s Society of Dramatic Arts will showcase five productions of a long-treasured C.S. Lewis classic, and offer a different twist on a main character.
A dramatization of “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe” will take place at La Sierra’s Matheson Hall on Dec. 1, 2, 6, 8 and 9, with all shows at 8 p.m. General admission is $10.
The society will use a stage adaptation written by Joseph Robinette. The treasured story, penned by Lewis in 1949, features four siblings, Lucy, Edmund, Susan and Peter Pevensie and their adventures in the mystical, wintery land of Narnia. They enter the frozen realm through a mysterious wardrobe in a room of an English country house. The story follows the children as they encounter the enchanting and sometimes wicked creatures of Narnia, the scheming White Witch who ensnares Edmund, and Aslan, the majestic lion who sacrifices his life for Edmund and is resurrected.
La Sierra English graduate student and award-winning drama director Shane Wood is directing the play which involves choreography by student group “Intricate Movement.” Wood tweaked the character of Father Christmas, who arrives bearing gifts for three of the Pevensie children, and changed the role to a Mother Christmas character. Four female actors take turns playing the part on different performance nights.
With Aslan providing a strong male presence, “I really wanted that female influence,” said Wood. “She gives [the children] gifts,” providing nurturance and support. Mother Christmas will be played by Lora Geriguis, La Sierra associate professor of English, and three female pastors from the La Sierra University Church—Senior Pastor Chris Oberg, children and families pastor Beverly Maravilla, and youth pastor LaToya Wolfe.
The following student actors, who are all drama minors, will play starring roles as the Pevensie children: Senior English and health management major William Appiah as Peter; freshman pre-law/business and film major Sarah Lancaster as Susan; freshman film major Jared de Vries as Edmund; and freshman communications major Alyssa Doyle as Lucy.
Chris Sepulveda, a junior ministry and drama major will play the role of Aslan.
Wood graduated from Walla Walla University in College Place, Wash. as a psychology major with a minor in drama and an emphasis in directing. While a student he directed three main stage plays. Over the years he has been involved in 35 productions as an actor or as a crew member working with costumes, hair and makeup design and other activities. He performed his first theatrical role at age 2, playing the Little Drummer Boy for a production at his home church in East Wenatchee, Washington.
“I realized I loved being up front,” said Wood. “One of the things I find in theater, in taking on the role of somebody else is it’s amazing how much a person learns about themselves.”
For further information or to reserve tickets call the box office at 951-785-2241, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.