Open-Air Setting Enhances Fall Play's Mood

The ancient story of Antigone unfolded in the firelit Ratté Quadrangle last week during a three-night run of the play Antigonick by Anne Carson, performed and produced by the Loomis Chaffee Performing Arts Department.

A 33-member student cast and crew presented the play, Ms. Carson’s interpretation of the Sophocles tragedy, despite the many challenges of creating theater safely during a pandemic. In fact, they took advantage of the unusual circumstances to immerse the audience in the play’s dark mood. The outdoor stage and seating in flickering torch-light, the layering of theatrical masks atop cloth masks, and an ensemble that surrounded the audience as menacing guards enhanced the gruesome tale of mortal power and divine comeuppance.

The show was directed by theater teacher David McCamish and assistant directed by English Department faculty member David Edgar and senior Aidan Gillies. The double cast, with actors alternating their roles across the four shows, included seniors Anna Rebello and Simone Moales as Antigone and senior John Howley and junior Aidan Cooper as Kreon, the king of Thebes.

The entire production team created a unique and memorable show, remarked Sue Chrzanowski, head of the Performing Arts Department. “I am so impressed with what they have been able to accomplish just to get here,” she said, noting that many of the rehearsals were conducted partially via Zoom video conference during the first half of the fall, when the Loomis campus was open only to day students.

Recordings of two of the performances and the playbill are available online (login required).