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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

NW production Szechwan to open

Casey+Magin+plays+the+prostitute+Shen+Te%2C+the+main+character+of+The+Good+Woman+of+Szechwan%2C+which+runs+on+NW+Dec.+4-8.+Performances+are+in+Theatre+Northwest+%28WTLO+1108%29.+Photo+by+Yesenia+Santillan%2FThe+Collegian
Casey Magin plays the prostitute Shen Te, the main character of The Good Woman of Szechwan, which runs on NW Dec. 4-8. Performances are in Theatre Northwest (WTLO 1108). Photo by Yesenia Santillan/The Collegian

By Victor Henderson/nw news editor

Casey Magin plays the prostitute Shen Te, the main character of The Good Woman of Szechwan, which runs on NW Dec. 4-8.  Performances are in Theatre Northwest (WTLO 1108).  Photo by Yesenia Santillan/The Collegian
Casey Magin plays the prostitute Shen Te, the main character of The Good Woman of Szechwan, which runs on NW Dec. 4-8. Performances are in Theatre Northwest (WTLO 1108). Photo by Yesenia Santillan/The Collegian

Theatre Northwest will present The Good Woman of Szechwan by Bertolt Brecht as its final production before the curtain falls on this semester.

The play follows Shen Te, a young prostitute in the town of Szechwan who struggles to balance living a morally sound life while also not allowing people to take advantage of her goodness.

To protect her interests, she creates a male alter ego whom she names Shui Ta. Eventually, Shen Te realizes that to live a good life, she must operate under both guises.

The actors have had to prepare for this play a little differently than in the past. Director Josh Blann said the actors will engage the audience in discussion about the themes represented in the show.

“Brecht is kind of known for … his own style of theater, which is called ‘epic theater,’” Blann said. “He basically thought that you shouldn’t try to fool people coming to see a theatrical production into thinking that they’re not sitting in a theater. That has been [the] aspect that we’re working on with the actors.”

Casey Magin plays the lead role of Shen Te, which she said is different for her.

From left: Morgan Mizell, Kelsey Busboon, McKenzie Morrow, Christine Moreno and Aimee Schmidt rehearse for The Good Woman of Szechwan, opening Dec. 4 on NW Campus. Tickets are free for TCC students, faculty and staff. Photo by Yesenia Santillan/The Collegian
From left: Morgan Mizell, Kelsey Busboon, McKenzie Morrow, Christine Moreno and Aimee Schmidt rehearse for The Good Woman of Szechwan, opening Dec. 4 on NW Campus. Tickets are free for TCC students, faculty and staff. Photo by Yesenia Santillan/The Collegian

“I usually play the quirky … sister,” she said. “[Shen Te] is so unscathed by this dirty, filthy city around her, and she’s just this shining, pure light. While she’s a prostitute, it’s almost as if that doesn’t factor in to how good she is. I’m used to playing a slightly more damaged person.”

Magin will also portray the male alter ego, Shui Ta. For this role, she has to change her voice and her body movements.

“This is the most difficult part for me,” she said. “I didn’t realize how naturally feminine my movements are. Once we work more with costumes, I’m probably going to use a sock down there because I imagine having something between your legs makes you walk a little different.”

Kelsey Busboom is taking on the roles of Mrs. Shin and God #1. She said it is easier for her to relate to the god because Mrs. Shin is a poor woman with children.

Mrs. Mi Tzu, played by Sarah Daniel, is the landlady to Shen Te and Shui Ta.

“At first, I was really excited because I was playing this older woman,” she said. “But as I’ve gone on … it’s definitely hit me a little harder than I thought.”

Garrett Floyd, who plays a conniving Yang Sun, said Brecht wrote this play to be an exaggerated version of reality.

“This whole entire play is … characterized,” he said. “There’s almost no centimeter of realism in this play. It’s literally like a cartoon on stage, so most of the characters that you see on stage will be very exaggerated.”

Blann said the emotions range throughout the play. He said the audience will be entertained, but they will also go away changed in some way.

“There is a lot of humor, but there is also a serious struggle the central character undergoes,” he said. “I’ll leave it to the audience to discover how the story ends.”

Shows are 7:30 p.m. Dec. 4-7 and 2 p.m. Dec. 8 in Theatre Northwest (WTLO 1108).

Admission is free for TCC students, faculty and staff, $3 for non-TCC students and senior citizens and $6 for the general public. To make reservations, call the box office at 817-515-7724. 

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