Campus News

"Evita" to be First Production in Renovated Pickard Theater

Story posted April 10, 2000

After a year of practicing in a former barn and in classrooms, the students of the Masque and Gown drama group are staging the first play in the newly renovated Pickard Theater. They’ve chosen a mammoth production to be worthy of the new digs.

A cast of 23 students and the work of more than 25 student designers and technicians has gone into the production of "Evita," making it the largest production ever mounted by Masque and Gown and sure to be a crowd-pleaser.

Performances are April 14, 15 and 16 at 8 p.m. and April 15 at 2 p .m. in the Pickard Theater on the Bowdoin campus. Tickets are $6 and are available at the Smith Union Information Desk or by calling 725-3375.

All of the work— from directing, to costume designing to choreography— has been done by students. Two students even traveled to Argentina in December and while there researched Argentinian dances and took notes on clothing and other aspects of culture. The production is being directed by Kevin Newbury ’00.

The audience is invited to a reception, sponsored by the President’s Office, immediately after the opening performance.

Evita dramatizes the life of Eva Peron, idolized wife of Argentine President Juan Peron. Evita’s roles as lover, wife, actress, politician, and saint have ensured her place in modern mythology.

The production christens the theater that will be the home of the Maine State Music Theater this summer. The granite block structure originally was built between 1867 and 1882. In 1952, it was renovated to include the 610-seat Pickard Theater, and typical of 1950s construction, the theater had no air conditioning or access for the disabled. The solution: Gut the 18,000-square-foot Memorial Hall down to its 2-foot-thick granite walls. The yearlong, $10.5 million project was completed just in time to house the production of "Evita."

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