Allegheny’s Student Experimental Theater will be putting on a production of “Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead” on Saturday March 7 at 8 p.m. and Sunday March 8 at 2:30 p.m. in the Little Theater in Arter Hall.
S.E.T. is a student run and operated club on campus that puts on shows throughout the academic year.
Lee Scandinaro, ’15, S.E.T. president, said the club is completely made up of students that act, produce, direct, manage, design and often times write their own shows.
“It’s a great way to explore theater and our passions in the arts,” he said.
Scandinaro plays Guildenstern in the production opposite Dan Keitel, ’17, who plays Rosencrantz. He said that the play, written by Tom Stoppard, is based off of Shakespeare’s “Hamlet.”
“It’s based off of two minor characters in Hamlet,” Scandinaro said. “If you know Hamlet, [Rosencrantz and Guildenstern] were the spies that took Hamlet to England to have him killed but then Hamlet tricked them into getting them killed.”
Peter Bergman, ’15, director of the production explained the play further.
“It’s about what happens to Rosencrantz and Guildenstern while they’re offstage in Hamlet and it’s due to the confines that their fates are already written and one of the last lines in Hamlet is ‘Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are dead,’” Bergman said. “It’s about their journey to find meaning of what is happening to them.”
Bergman chose to do this play because it is one of his favorite plays written by his favorite playwright.
“One of my majors is theater and I’ve done a lot of scene and design aspects in theater but I’ve never really delved into a big play like this before and I thought well it’s my senior year, last semester, I want to do something that’s going to be fun and that I’m going to be happy with so why not try and do my favorite play,” Bergman said.
Liz Colarte, ’17, plays a male character in the play called the player. She said that S.E.T. is different than Allegheny’s Playshop Theater because it is completely student produced and presents a lot of challenges because of that.
“Students do everything where as in Playshop we have professors and other people working on things for us rather than just us being self sufficient,” Colarte said. “I think that definitely makes it harder but it also makes it rewarding in some aspects because you learn how to do it all on your own.”
Bergman said he is looking forward to see the audience’s reaction to the production upon its debut.
“I’m looking forward to just the audience having fun and laughing,” he said. “Hopefully they understand the deep wordplay of the play and all of the substantial interactions and all of the fun stuff that was able to make it. I’m just excited to see people enjoy it.”
Scandinaro said the show has no limits because the characters are so obscure which gave the actors a chance to explore and develop their characters fully.
“I like exploring that sort of at the point of no return like what does a person look like when they don’t know what to do,” Scandinaro said.
Tickets for “Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead” are free with no reservation.