Student directs play “The Cripple of Inishmaan”


Photo courtesy of Theatre Wesleyan

Student Ethan Brandt directs a play for Theatre Wesleyan.

The Cripple of Inishmaan is the latest production to be held by Theatre Wesleyan. Following the opening night on Thursday February 16, the show will run through February 26.  

Written by playwright and filmmaker Martin McDonagh, this dark comedy is set in Ireland in 1934 and follows the journey of young Billy who longs to get away from his life on the small island of Inishmaan.  

Director and senior theatre major Ethan Brandt is no stranger to the stage, starring in many of Theatre Wesleyan’s productions. It is wonderful to see his passion for theatre portrayed in a new light as a director. Observing not only the play itself but Brandt’s enthusiasm whilst viewing the show, it is evident that he possesses a talent for bringing stories alive.  

It is important to note that this production is recommended for mature audiences and that the title and dialogue are used in a historical and cultural context pertaining to the time and setting of 1930s Ireland. 

Junior and senior theatre majors Abigale Hunt and Gianina Lambert open the show as Billy’s estranged aunt’s Kate and Eileen. The hilarious duo alongside Johnnypateenmike played by senior theatre major Johnathan Burt wonderfully set the scene for the introduction of Billy’s character.  

The show is full of odd pairs including the undeniably funny siblings Helen and Bartley McCormick portrayed by K.J. Felder and freshman theatre major Hayden Kirkbride. Probably the most intriguing and comedic pair is the mother-son duo of Johnnypateenmike and his Mammy played by Nicole Davis senior BFA theatre major.  

In a scene following Billy’s move to Hollywood, freshman theatre major Hunter Kleinschmidt who plays Billy Claven delivers a moving monologue that powerfully captures his audience. The ingenuity with which Kleinschmidt tackles such a complex role is highly commendable. 

Those who plan to attend the show are sure to laugh from the brilliantly executed lines to the clever use of props. Junior theatre major Nicholas Keel gives a tasteful performance in his role as the doctor. The cast give a great performance and keep the audience entertained throughout. K. J. Felder must also be congratulated for her vibrant performance.  

Mention must be made of the great fight choreography pulled off by the cast, especially actor Chase di Iulio who portrayed the character Babbybobby.  

The set design was beautiful and along with the incredible costume’s, one is easily transported to 1930s Ireland.  

Tickets to view the show can be purchased through Theatre Wesleyan’s ticket provider. For more information call the Box Office at 817-531-4211 or email [email protected] 

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