Last Senior Theater Festival show The Skriker strikes tonight
Senior Theatre Festival will conclude this weekend with Caryl Churchill’s The Skriker, tonight at 7:30 p.m. and tomorrow at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Prepare for a unique trip into Celtic mythology and what happens when people no longer believe in creatures of folklore.
The Skriker tells the tale of a shapeshifting fairy who is barely surviving in the underworld because the humans above have stopped telling her story. She leads the rest of the misshapen creatures in finding a way to keep their stories alive.
Some of these creatures are Kelpies—horse-like creatures that live underwater and drag children down to eat them—Johnny Squarefoot —a large, pig-like man that throws rocks at people—and Rawheadandbloodybones—a creature that hides in the shadows and eats bad or lying children.
Most of the audience will not know who these creatures are, but senior dramaturg Marika Proctor will provide a great display in the lobby that will explain who all of these creatures are in Celtic Mythology and what they are known for.
Senior Emily Rychlick, who did an excellent job earlier in the year as Iphigenia, leads the cast as the Skriker, a shapeshifter with a unique style of speaking that reflects her shifting personality.
Proctor said her dialogue is “an exciting, challenging hodgepodge of references to folktales, nursery rhymes, common phrases and historical events.”
For example, here is an excerpt from the play’s opening monologue, with a reference to Rumplestiltskin, or Tom Tit Tot as he’s called in England:
“Heard her boast beast a roast beef eater, daughter could spin span spick and spun the lowest form of wheat straw into gold, raw into roar, golden lion and lyonesse under the sea, dungeonesse under the castle for bad mad sad adders and takers away.”
The Skriker preys on two young British girls, Josie and Lily, and particularly on Josie because she is pregnant. The baby would help keep the underworld alive, so Josie is tricked into going down to the underworld to help the creatures.
It is a unique look into the powers of mythology that are lost in modern times.
Senior Sarah McKinley was very excited to direct The Skriker, a play she felt would not only provide a challenge, but also one with a leading female cast, something she felt is not seen as much in modern or classic theatre.
Proctor was also very excited about the production.
“I hope that people come to see the show to be excited and surprised. It’s a show that makes you think outside the box about the world we live in, the stories we tell, and even about what the capacities of theater are. I also hope people come see the show to see some of Churchill’s work in action! She’s one of the most influential theatrical innovators of the past 50 years!”
Audience members are encouraged to keep their eyes peeled. Many things will be going on around them, so have fun with multiple activities to keep an eye on while the main action happens onstage.
Tickets are $6 for Puget Sound students and faculty/staff, seniors (65+), military, and $8 general admission. Purchase at ups.universitytickets.com, the Info Center, or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Remaining will be tickets sold at the door.