I don't think I've ever been happier than when I discovered there is a verse play about The Aeneid. As a Shakespeare and Latin nerd, Dido, Queen of Carthage was a dream come true. What I love right from the start is that it comes from the underdogs: Christopher Marlowe and Virgil, not Shakespeare and Homer. Dido's story is uniquely powerful - rarely do we see a queen in the classical world who is a solid ruler. Usually they're psychopathic witches or extreme warriors. Dido is just Dido. She's an excellent ruler who's trajectory is interrupted because the gods care more for a man than for her.
Working on Dido was a joy. I adapted the text for the full George Mason production to be an 80 minute one act infused with bold movement and creative lighting. Through my grant with the Office of Undergraduate Research's Students as Scholars program, I was able to conduct more research and gather more resources than a typical Mason production. My work with Students as Scholars also encouraged students from a wide range of disciplines to attend. I was honored with the Student Excellence Award, the highest honor in the elite program, upon completion of the project .
But... I knew my work was not done. I knew that i could go further with the text. I was given the opportunity to do just this as part of WSC Avant Bard's inaugural Scripts in Play Festival. In this continued adaptation, I worked with the feedback I had received from Mason and began adding in new, pure Virgil ideas. My work with this text will be a years-long process and I can't wait to see where I am able to go with it next,
Producing Organization: George Mason University & The Office of Undergraduate Research
Dates: November 2014
Scenic: Christopher Chandler-Liu
Lights: Nick Barry
Sound: Alessandro Gaiarin
Costumes: Allison Corless
Stage Manager: Bree St. Clair
Dramaturg: Zach Wilcox
Photography: Ruthie Rado Photography
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Producing Organization: WSC Avant Bard
Dates: March 2016