Tuesday, September 25, 2012

'Oleanna' set to address issues of cruel intentions

     David Mamet’s heated play “Oleanna” about the abuse of power and sexual exploitation is sure to strike up a strong debate when it’s presented by the Valencia College humanities speaker series this week.

     The piece will be presented in partnership with talented actors John DiDonna and Samantha O’Hare from the local performance group Empty Spaces Theater Company, along with directorial assistance by Valencia College professor and theater program chair, Julia Gagne.

     On the difficulties faced in this production, adept actress Samantha O’Hare said, “This was the first one in which the ethical issues in question, or the ‘rightness’ or ‘wrongness’ of the character was difficult to figure out.”

     A shifting power struggle between a college education professor and a young student form the backdrop to this production. The audience will overlook a searing series of events leading to accusations of abuse threatening to change both characters’ lives for the worse.

     After the performances the actors and audience will have a moderated discussion about the issues addressed during the production. Not only does the play promise to provide a unique experience--one not typically found with live theatrical performances--that will hopefully lead to a thought provoking exchange on the ethical issues questioned by the play.

     “More than the actual performance, I’m looking forward to the interaction with the audience,” said O’Hare.

     This play will be free to all Valencia students and faculty members with only two scheduled performances. The first show premiers at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 27 and the encore show follows at 1 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 28.

     Both plays will be performed in the black box theater located in building three of Valencia College’s east campus. The seating for this event will be limited so arrive early to ensure accessibility.

     More information on this and other upcoming productions at Valencia can be found at http://valenciacollege.edu/artsandentertainment/.

By James Tutten



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