On Saturday morning, ten energetic Upper School students met in the school dining room as the sun was rising to have a quick breakfast and then head south to enjoy the weekend in Ashland, Oregon. They were off to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival to see two stage plays plus receive a backstage tour.
The festival is among the oldest and largest professional non-profit theatres in the nation. The festival each year presents eleven plays in three theatres starting in March and with the season closing at end of October. The Oregon Shakespeare Festival presents more than 780 performances annually with an attendance of approximately 400,000.
The Delphian students saw the plays A Servant of Two Masters and The Music Man. The first play was a commedia dellarte by Italian playwright, Carlo Godini. The students immensely enjoyed the antics and improvisation by the characters including audience interplay as the servant, Truffaldino, madly fibbed his way through a day of near disasters, as he attended to two masters. The students were delighted to have as their backstage tour guide on Sunday morning, the actor who portrayed the Porter in this hilarious comedy.
The students attended the Sunday matinee of The Music Man by American playwright Meredith Willson. This musical took them to River City, Iowa in 1912. The transformation of the stage setting using the power of color highlighted this classic musical as the students literally watched Professor Howard Hill color the town with openhearted possibility as a traveling con man.
Several students are already making plans to return to Ashland on next year’s trip in September 2010 to attend the performances of Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night and Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.