“The Revolutionists” finds a humorous and creative way to show political struggles after the French Revolution. Lauren Gunderson’s play centers on the political and real-life struggles of four women, each with very different personalities. Some names you might recognize like Mary Antoinette, a monarch, and the notorious assassin Charlotte Corday. The other two characters – an enslaved Caribbean woman named Marianne Angelle, and writer Olympe de Gouges – are not as well known but definitely add just as much intrigue.
It is the full female cast that gives “The Revolutionists” a feminist perspective with a pre-feminist twist. All four main characters are fighting a time of terror and death to discover exactly who they are as individuals and what their place is in this world.
Director Margie Anich, also a full-time lecturer at The Ohio State University Lima campus, is no stranger to UF’s Theatre Program. She helped direct “Silent Sky,” a 2016 UF production.
“I’m excited to do another one of her (Gunderson’s) plays”, said Anich. “It’s a newer play, and I like the fact that it is for women.”
Anich says that this play will have audience members asking a lot of big questions about creativity and life. Does art matter? Does theater matter? Do words matter? Out of these, however, there is one bigger question being asked, said Anich: “If you know you’re going to die, what are the last things you’d want to say?”
Anich hopes that this production will entice audiences to consider these matters, apply them to contemporary societal activities, and factor in the concept of inevitable change.
Politics, female empowerment and self-discovery are not the only subjects being addressed in “The Revolutionists.”
“It is very much a comedy,” said Anich. “The characters even let us know at the beginning that it’s a comedy.”
“The Revolutionists” will be staged Sept 28, 29 and 30 at 7:30 pm, and on Oct. 1 at 2 p.m. All shows will take place at the Frank J. Egner Center for the Performing Arts’ John and Hester Powell Grimm Theatre. Admission will be $5 for the general public. Tickets can be purchased at the Marathon Center for the Performing Arts. University of Findlay students, faculty and staff will be admitted free with a valid University ID.
“The Revolutionists” had its world premiere in Cincinnati, Ohio in February 2016, and garnered an excellent Enquirer review from critic David Lyman, who claimed those who didn’t show up to the debut “missed a sassy, hold-on-to-your-seats theatrical adventure.”
The four leads include Abbey Bumbledare as Olympe De Gouges, Abigail Starcher as Charlotte Corday, Abby Land as Marie Antoinette and Adrionna Powell as Marianne Angelle.
Also contributing to this production are set designer Carl Walling, technical director Matt Stimmel, and several other UF students who designed and built the set.