Discussion focused on play’s 2 versions

By Kayla Pickrell

“Romeo and Juliet” and “Roméo et Juliette” directors and cast members will gather  at a round table Wednesday to discuss their productions.

“Romeo and Juliet,” which debuts Dec. 1 on campus, will feature the classic love story by William Shakespeare with a twist of violence. Andrew Kimbrough, the production’s director, sees this play as more violent than a typical love story.

“There is more tension within ‘Romeo and Juliet’ that most people pass by because they see it only as a love story,” Kimbrough said to an introduction to theater class earlier in the semester.

“Roméo et Juliette,” the operatic production premiering Saturday at the Lexington Opera House, follows the original Shakespearean play, but with minor changes.

“A character named Stéfano was added to create a higher pitched pageboy to Romeo,” said John Greer, singing coach for “Roméo et Juliette.” Greer also mentioned that it is common for higher-pitched male characters to be played by women.

Although the opera performance will be in French, the audience will be able to understand it with English supertitles provided by the director, Stephanie Sundine. Subtitles are placed next to, or held up by, the performers.

Topics such as what the directors have in mind for the productions and what the audience should expect will be discussed at the round table Wednesday.

Students and faculty are encouraged to bring their own questions to ask or to inquire on something about theater or music in general, Greer said.

The performances “will be entertaining,” said Nancy Jones, chair of UK’s department of theatre, earlier in the semester. “The plays were chosen with the university community in mind.”

Jones also said that the plays are “outside of the box” this year.

One of the reasons “Roméo et Juliette” will be “outside of the box” this year is because of the rarity of talent involved in the production.

The singers have been practicing since last spring, Greer said.

“I am very impressed with the experience with their singing in French and thinking in French as they perform,” Greer said.

While it was hard for the students to adjust to French, all of this year’s productions took a long time to develop because of the theme this year, Rebels Act Out, Jones said.

“It is hard to predict what people will be interested in,” Jones said. “I think we picked a very thought out series that will relate to the audience on many levels.”

If You Go:

What: Round Table Discussion for Romeo and Juliet

When: Wednesday 3:30 p.m.

Where: Niles Gallery, Lucille Little Fine Arts Library

Admission: Free