"The Tempest" set for Gentry March 1-4

William Shakespeare’s take on sibling rivalry, magic and justice will take C-N’s Gentry Auditorium by storm March 1-4 with the spring production of The Tempest.

Prospero, a displaced noble from Milan, lives in exile on an island with daughter Miranda and two slaves, Ariel and Caliban. Using magic, Prospero conjures a storm by which Antonio, the treacherous brother who stole the crown, is cast ashore, as are a number of odd crewmates.

Thought by many scholars to be the last work Shakespeare wrote without assistance, The Tempest uses the metaphor of a cyclone to examine personal storms as well as the calm that comes from grace and justice. Adding a twist to the 500-year-old story, Director Kyle Biery has opted for recasting Prospero as a female. Jessy Lakins, a junior from Morristown, will play Duchess Prospera.

“Changing the gender of the lead character sets subtleties into motion, from something simple, like a mother’s intuition on matters of love, to the complexities of a woman seeking justice in a patriarchal system,” noted Biery, director and leader of the theatre program.

Lakins is joined by other C-N stage veterans, including Greeneville senior Faith Radar (Antonia), Jefferson City sophomore Austin Olive (Ferdinand), and Laura-Kate Gonyea (Ariel), a freshman from Thompson Station. Macey Gentry, a junior from Newport, will make her C-N debut in the role of Miranda.

Performances are slated for 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, March 1-3. A matinee will be presented at 2 p.m. on Sunday, March 4. Tickets are $8 general, $5 for students and seniors, and may be reserved through the Gentry box office at 865-471-4163 beginning February 22.