Stage Center Theatre 2011-2012 Season
Main Stage Productions

Spring Semester of 2012
The Misanthrope
by Moliere adapted by Neil Bartlett
directed by Rodney Higginbotham

Playwright Neil Bartlett transports Moliere’s classic comedy from a world of seventeenth century French courtiers to a 1989 world of Hollywood show business players. In so doing, he has remained faithful to the original text, staying close to Moliere’s plot and characters. The theme of hypocrisy vs. honesty sparkles clearly in the verse as Alceste, the misanthrope, insists on being brutally truthful in all he says in a world where flattery, not honesty, is the fashion.

Alceste..................................Blake Malley
Philinte.................................Michael Slas
Oronte................................Ethan Kaplan
Celimene...................................Jill Matel
Eliante..............................Sarah Beckette
Clitandre........................Mark Razniewski
Acaste............................Nicholas Santana
Arsinoe.......................Elizabeth Krahulec

Production Staff_________________
Director...................Rodney Higginbotham
Assistant Director.....................Lilly Allison
Stage Manager............................Yim Chiu
Assistant Stage Manager.......Arbella Albazi
Scenic Designer................Jessica Kuehnau
Costume Designer...............Jana Anderson
Costume Mistress..................Maria Barajas
Lighting Designer...............John Rodriguez
Sound Designer........................Luke Sword
Sound Board Operator...........Robert Fuller
Light Board Operator............Elizabeth Soto
Running Crew.....................Ana Gonzalez, Janet Thomas
Set Construction...........Theatre Practicum  and Stagecraft Classes

The setting is 1989 in the home of Celimene in Hollywood

misanthrope: (noun ) A hater of mankind; a person who distrusts and avoids other people.Oxford English Dictionary

Misanthropic Quotes...

“I don't hate people. I just feel better when they aren't around.”   --Charles Bukowski

“I'm not anti-social. I'm just not social.”  --Woody Allen

“I wish I loved the human race, I wish I loved its silly face, and when I'm introduced to one, I wish I thought "what jolly fun"!”  --Walter Raleigh

“Most people are full of themselves and speak only the obnoxiously superficial, in other words they're annoying as hell” --Novala Takemoto, Missin' (Novel)

“I have always hated crowds. I like deserts, prisons, and monasteries. I have discovered, too, that there are fewer idiots at 3000 meters above sea level than down below.” --Jean Giono, An Italian Journey

“Knowledge subverts love: in proportion as we penetrate our secrets, we come to loathe our kind, precisely because they resemble us.” --Emil Cioran

“I cannot but conclude that the Bulk of your Natives, to be the most pernicious Race of little odious Vermin that Nature ever suffered to crawl upon the Surface of the Earth.” --Jonathan Swift, Gulliver's Travels

“A poet or philosopher should have no fault to find with his age if it only permits him to do his work undisturbed in his own corner; nor with his fate if the corner granted him allows of his following his vocation without having to think about other people.”  --Arthur Schopenhauer, The Art of Literature

“The leech's kiss, the squid's embrace,
The prurient ape's defiling touch:
And do you like the human race?
No, not much.”
 --Aldous Huxley, Ape and Essence

“I alternate between feeling sympathetic toward humanity and being a misanthrope. When I'm sympathetic, it usually means I haven't been around people in awhile.”  --John R. Lindensmith

“Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public.”   --H. L. Mencken

Sarah Beckette (Eliante), currently at Northeastern working towards her degree in early childhood education, is excited to be in her second show at the Stage Center Theatre. She studied improv at Improv Olympics and has done multiple sketch comedy shows around Chicago. She would like to thank the cast of The Misanthrope for all the mediocre laughs, her family and friends for all their mediocre love and support, and Jesus, her favorite Barista, for the superior coffee.

Ethan Kaplan (Oronte) is currently studying Philosophy and Theatre at NEIU. He studied Film and Video at Columbia College Chicago and made an 8-minute short film there called Painting Aphrodite: a Story of Loss. He has written 10 screenplays and is currently in the pre-production stages of the feature-film version of Painting Aphrodite. This is his first role since playing Lancelot in his grade school production of Camelot, but working closely with his seasoned actors, he has become attuned to the art of performance.  

Elizabeth Krahulec (Arsinoe) is currently a CMT major at NEIU. She has been in such performances as Fuddy Meers as Gertie, O Come All Ye Faithful as Sue, The Merry Wives of Windsor as Mistress Page, and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat as the Narrator. She wants to thank her family and friends for listening while she slipped in and out of 12 syllable verse, the cast and crew for their support and humor, and Rodney, not only the opportunity, but also his encouragement, especially for making things more catty.

Blake Malley (Alceste) is a Communication, Media and Theatre major at NEIU.  He is excited to be in another production at Stage Center after playing Peter in O Come All Ye Faithful, Fabian in Twelfth Night, and Richard in Fuddy Meers.  He would like to thank his family and friends for their support (and help with memorizing lines) and Rodney and the cast and crew for making a difficult show come together so well.

Jill Matel (Celimene) is very excited to be returning to the Stage Center stage.  A CMT major, she previously studied dance and theater at Barat College.  Favorite roles include Roxy in Chicago, Hodel in Fiddler on the Roof, Polly in 3 Penny Opera, and Maria in Twelfth Night.  Thanks to Rodney for the opportunity to expand her horizons in rhyming couplets, Anna and Lisa for their support and guidance, a truly talented cast and crew, and RJ for being her rock- LU!  And to the audience...."Oh!  Darlings!  It's such a treat to see you here!"  

Mark Razniewski (Clitandre) is thrilled to be making his first performance at the Stage Center Theatre. Recent credits include Eugene in The Spotted Man and Dave in The Wedding Singer. He currently attends NEIU, jerks coffee at Starbucks, and is a facilitator/company member with Stillpoint Theatre Collective, conducting theater workshops for adults with developmental disabilities. If you'd like to catch him after the show, as far as Mark's concerned, it's still rather early. His first meeting tomorrow's not 'til 8:30.

Nicholas Santana (Acaste) is currently a philosophy major at NEIU. New to theater, he has only performed in one other production: Crimes of the Heart as Doc Porter. An avid admirer of Moliére’s genius, he is thrilled to be taking part in a play which he considers a timeless classic. Nicholas would like to thank his talented cast and crew for the hard work and the LOLs.

Michael Slas (Philinte) has done a lot of work around Chicago, but The Misanthrope has quickly become one of his favorites. He'd like to thank the cast, crew, and director for making it such a great experience. He'd also like to thank his friends and family for ponying up to see his shows.

Artisitc Staff_____________________

Rodney Higginbotham (Director) holds an MFA in Theatre Directing from Southern Illinois University and a BA in Speech Education from Northeast Louisiana University. He has served as Managing/Artistic Director of the Stage Center Theatre and Acting Chair of the Department of Communication, Media and Theatre. He has directed several productions for the Stage Center and for professional, educational, and community theatres in Chicagoland.

Lilly Allison (Asst. Director) is currently student teaching and will be graduating from NEIU in May. This is her first experience assistant directing a show. She has studied theater here at NEIU, at DePaul, and at Stanford Meisner's Neighborhood Playhouse in NYC. She is an experienced improviser and stand-up comedian. She has recently been seen traveling around the country (and Vienna, Austria) with The Second City's National Touring Company. She is an ensemble member at The Annoyance Thtr and performs at I.O. She spends her evenings teaching improv at The Annoyance and Second City. She wants to thank Rodney for being a great teacher!

Yim Chiu (Stage Manager) is stage managing a Stage Center Production for the first time with The Misanthrope. She has assisted stage managed previously in The Odd Couple and Fuddy Meers. She is a student at NEIU with a major in Communication, Media and Theatre with a minor in Theatre. She wants to thank Rodney Higginbotham for giving her the opportunity to be a part of this production. She also wants to thank the cast of The Misanthrope. Big thanks to her family, Anna, Lisa, Pat, Shyla, Nickolena, Bella, and all of her friends for believing in her. C&C

Arbella Albazi (Asst. Stage Manager) is thrilled to be a part of another wonderful Stage Center production.  She recently assistant directed for The Odd Couple and Twelfth Night.  Arbella would like to thank Rodney for the opportunity to assistant stage manage The Misanthrope and to work along side some of the most talented actors and crew members EVER!  You guys are truly incredible!  

John Rodriguez (Lighting Designer) joined the theatre faculty at NEIU nine years ago and has been teaching courses in technical theatre as well as working as a designer on Stage Center Theatre productions. Most recent designs include Around the World in Eighty Days, Bleacher Bums, Odd Couple, A Midsummer Night’s Dream as well as Thymely Theatre’s productions of You Can’t Take It With You and As You Like It.

Jessica Kuehnau (Scenic Designer) is pleased to be designing her fifth season for the Stage Center Theatre. Since completing her M.F.A. in Scenic and Costume Design at Northwestern University, Ms. Kuehnau has been designing sets and costumes for such notable theatres as Pegasus Players, Circle Theatre, Griffin, Lifeline Theatre, MPAACT, Adventure Stage Chicago, Metropolis Performing Art Center and Backstage Theatre. She is also the resident set designer at North Park University and a founding ensemble member of Adventure Stage Center Chicago.

Jana Anderson (Costume Designer) has worked with the Stage Center Theatre for the last few years  Her work has also been featured by numerous theatre groups including Redmoon Theatre, Light Opera Works, Irish Repertory Theatre, just to name a few. Prior to coming to the United States, Jana created elaborate costumes for classical opera productions at the Slovak National Theatre in Bratislava, Czechoslovakia. When she is not preparing costumes for theatre productions, Jana is busy designing and creating unique haute couture fashions for individual clients in the US and Europe.

Theatre Personnel_______________

Managing Artistic Director Rodney Higginbotham
Theatre Bookkeeper Lisa Cantwell
Publications & Publicity Staff Elizabeth Krahulec and Elizabeth Serrano
Newsletter Editor Elizabeth Krahulec
Box Office & House Managers Marta Mardosz and Seden Odabas

Special thanks to
  The Department of Communication, Media and Theatre Faculty and Staff,

The Misanthrope is produced by special arrangement with The Agency (London) Ltd.

Oronte (Ethan Kaplan), the would-be poet, declaims his latest work while Philinte (Michal Slas) puts on his best game face and Alceste (Blake Malley) openly shows his disgust during a rehearsal of The Misanthrope.
Celimene (Jill Matel) toys with the emotions of (Alceste) Blake Malley while he struggles to bend her to his way of life during a rehearsal of The Misanthrope.
Celimene (Jill Matel) and Arsinoe (Elizabeth Krahulec) clash in a poetic cat fight during a rehearsal of The Misanthrope.





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