It’s that time of year again: Wilson students are studying, perfecting and performing one of the timeless texts of William Shakespeare.
Wilson will bring “Romeo and Juliet” to the black box this March, the famous forbidden love story that is now the foundation of thousands of narratives. Romeo and Juliet are both born into rich families in Verona, Italy. They meet at a party and fall in love, declaring they will fight for their feelings, regardless of the hatred between their two families.
Directors Harriet Bronstein and Dan Iwaniec have decided to do a gender neutral show; Romeo will be played by senior Sophie Thurschwell and Juliet will be played by sophomore Sofia Suardi. “This show has been pretty unique in how the rehearsal process felt because this show is surprisingly difficult just in content, but also because it’s not necessarily casted traditionally so having a dated setting is interesting.” Thurschwell said. The play will be set in the 1300s, the period Shakespeare wrote Romeo and Juliet in, but Wilson has added some modern twists, including contemporary dancing. “Every Shakespeare show has music or dancing, something to make it a little more different.” sophomore Ayomi Wolff said. The dances include songs like Drowning Shadows by Sam Smith, and Finesse by Bruno Mars and Cardi B.
One highlight of the show, according to Wolff, is the four fight scenes. “The production is amazing. We use these aluminum knives,” Wolff said. To perfect these challenging scenes, Wilson brought in fight choreographer Casey Kaleba, someone who has worked on professional shows, and more importantly 45 other Romeo and Juliet productions.
The show times are 7:30 p.m. on March 15, 16, and 17 and a matinee show at 2:30 p.m. on the 17. Seeing Romeo and Juliet not only supports Wilson theater, but can open your eyes to some underlying themes that you could easily overlook. “I think it’s really just about how emotions dictate are lives and how we conduct ourselves after a tragedy.” Thurschwell said. •
PHOTO COURTESY OF NAOMI TODD