The Pitt-Greensburg Theatre Company will open its 2013-2014 main-stage schedule with “The Birth of Merlin, or The Child Has Found His Father” by William Shakespeare and William Rowley. “The Birth of Merlin” will be performed at Pitt-Greensburg’s Ferguson Theater November 21 through November 23 at 7:30 p.m., and November 24 at 2:00 p.m. Tickets are $10 regular, $5 Students/Seniors/Pitt ID.
Stephen A. Schrum, associate professor of Theatre Arts at the University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg, will direct “The Birth of Merlin.” John Teacher, instructor of Theatre Arts at the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown and a former collaborator with Schrum, will handle the set design for the production. Dianna Bourke will serve as the costume designer for the production.
Schrum’s vision for this production is to pit Victorian Britains against Gothic Saxon Vampires, utilizing a steampunk aesthetic with Jules Verne-esque settings and costumes.
“In the traditional version of this play of religious faith and magic, the audience is transported to the early days of the British Kingdom,” explains Schrum. “The Britains are at war with the Saxons, there is civil unrest, and Prince Uther is missing—off searching for the beautiful woman whose enchantment has captured his heart. Meanwhile, the expectant Joan and her clownish brother are searching for the mysterious father of her child. ‘The Birth of Merlin’ is a supernatural tale of conflict, deviltry—literally—and resolution, as the magical child Merlin, who is born fully grown, does find his father.”
Schrum also notes that there has been much scholarly debate about the authorship of this play (usually placed in the doubtful “apocryphal works of Shakespeare” category) but it appears to be a true collaboration between the two authors.
For information, contact Dr. Stephen Schrum, Director of Theatre at Pitt-Greensburg: by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 724-836-7483.