Will fear shape the person you are? This is the question raised throughout The Indiana Wesleyan University Theatre Guild’s production of The Crucible.
Set in Salem, Mass. in 1692, the Crucible begins with an unconscious girl lying on a cot.
From the moment the lights faded to black at the beginning to when the lights dimmed down at the ending, the audience was visibly engrossed in the action.
The characters mentioned witchcraft and there was an audible hush in the audience. I wanted to know more about the town and the people that were accused of witchcraft.
The audience soon learned more about the characters’ lives as the first act unfolded. Characters began to share more about their pasts and other shocking details about each of them.
The backstories of Abigail Williams and John Proctor were the two most surprising.
Abigail, played by Stephanie Lamb (so), portrayed the character as delightfully innocent yet sinister. Her backstory was both intriguing and creepy.
John Proctor, played by Gardy Darbouze (jr), revealed his past to the audience and gave the plot a darker tone after his explanation.
The first act set up the rest of the play nicely. Intermission started and the audience was left with many questions.
Anticipation for the second act to begin was high as the audience waited to find out more about the characters and what would happen to them.
Abigail Williams opened up the second act with a dance in the woods by lantern light.
She met John Proctor for a conversation about what was to happen. The dialogue between the two characters was powerful and a great way to open up the second act.
After the dialogue in the woods, a scene surrounding the court began. This scene started slowly and I became disinterested in what was happening.
After Mary Warren, played by Ashley Nossett (jr), told the truth about the situation, Abigail and her group of friends began lying to counteract her words. The scene began to pick up after this and I was again caught up in the action.
When the courtroom scene ended, I had chills and was on the edge of my seat.
After a somber conclusion, the play ended with an eerie reciting of the Lord’s Prayer.
The fear displayed by the characters caused me to think about what I would have done in that situation. Would I have given up who I was in order to stay alive? I was struck with the fact that I was not sure what I would have done.
The cast did a great job portraying people of the 1600s. Darbouze played a convincing John Proctor.
Besides the cast, the set design was beautiful and the detail of leaves made it seem as if there was an actual forest in the BlackBox Theater.
The instrumental music played in between scenes added a very time specific feel to the play.
The play will run next weekend on Nov. 21, 22, and 23. Tickets are available at the Phillippe Performing Arts Center Box Office.