Looking for love in a hi-tech world
RELEASED: Nov. 3, 2005
DANVILLE, KYCentre College drama students will present four performances of Alan Ayckbourn's satirical comedy Henceforward…. The director is Anthony Haigh, with performances to take place Nov. 9-12 at 8 p.m. in Weisiger Theatre at the Norton Center for the Arts. The play features original music by composer Paul Todd.
The cast includes: Meredith Bell, David Brown, Chad Dike, Zeke Goggin, Talia Harris, Erin C. McGuire, Carrie Robison, Chelsi Warner, and Sophia Warner.
Ayckbourn's Henceforward… is about our fascination with—and enslavement by—technology. It is set in a near-future world in which communication between people is mediated by video andelectronics. People seem to relate more closely to machines than to other human beings. The play explores the isolation and selfishness of the artist in this postmodern world and the ways in which artistic obsession and technology can blind people to reality and human contact.
Haigh, professor of dramatic arts at Centre, says of his choice of play, "Ayckbourn's vision of the future is tortured by technology. People are overwhelmed by gadgets–-some of which look and behave like people. But in the end real people are human, 'warm and spontaneous and amusing and joyful and—loving.'"
Haigh has been drawn to Ayckbourn's work for many years and has directed four of his plays. His directing debut at Centre in 1991 featured Ayckbourn's Woman in Mind.
Ayckbourn is one of the world's most frequently performed playwright in English, after Shakespeare. One of Britain's most prolific living playwrights, he has written 70 plays and is the artistic director of the Stephen Joseph Theatre in the small seaside town of Scarborough, England. Additionally, Ayckbourn is recognized as one of the England's leading directors. He has received numerous awards including a Dramalogue Critics Award for Henceforward…, and in 1997 he was knighted for his services to theater.
Haigh met Ayckbourn last summer in England while attending the annual "Ayckbourn And The Round" workshop. At the workshop Haigh had the opportunity to watch Ayckbourn direct, give masterclasses, and take part in discussions. Haigh gained insight into how Ayckbourn writes, works, and views theater.
"His plays are written from his personal experience," says Haigh. "When he directs he often tells stories to the actors to guide them in their interpretation of their role."
Haigh continues, "Ayckbourn is dedicated to the notion of community. He values the restorative nature of theater and sees theater as one of the bricks in building a community that brings people together."Tickets may be purchased through the box office at Centre College’s Norton Center for the Arts or by telephone by calling (859) 236-4692.
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Founded in 1819, Centre College is ranked among the U.S. News top 50 national liberal arts colleges. Centre alumni, known for their nation-leading loyalty in annual financial support, include two U.S. vice presidents and two Supreme Court justices. For more, visit http://www.centre.edu/web/elevatorspeech/
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