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The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Stakes have never been hotter for witches

Student+performers+with+the+NE+Campus+theater+program+practice+choreography+and+rehearse+their+lines+on+stage+for+%E2%80%9CThe+Crucible.%E2%80%9D+The+1953+Arthur+Miller+play+is+based+on+the+Salem+witch+trials.+Photo+by+Joseph+Serrata%2FThe+Collegian
Student performers with the NE Campus theater program practice choreography and rehearse their lines on stage for “The Crucible.” The 1953 Arthur Miller play is based on the Salem witch trials. Photo by Joseph Serrata/The Collegian
September, 18, 2019 | Jill Bold | campus editor
Student performers with the NE Campus theater program practice choreography and rehearse their lines on stage for “The Crucible.” The 1953 Arthur Miller play is based on the Salem witch trials. Photo by Joseph Serrata/The Collegian
Student performers with the NE Campus theater program practice choreography and rehearse their lines on stage for “The Crucible.” The 1953 Arthur Miller play is based on the Salem witch trials.
Photo by Joseph Serrata/The Collegian

The NE Campus theater program will inject new elements of music and choreography into their version of Arthur Miller’s play “The Crucible,” premiering Sept. 27.

American playwright Arthur Miller penned “The Crucible” in 1953. This drama tells the somewhat fictionalized tale of the Salem witch trials and served as an allegory for McCarthyism.

Miller’s comparison between the wrongful Salem witch trials and the paranoia stoked by a fear of communism in the 1950s was intended to highlight the problems of discrimination and persecution. These pitfalls can lead normally pious people down dark and dangerous paths of destruction. This dilemma is the basis for most of the action in “The Crucible.”

“This is an adaptation. We are seeing elements that are alluded to in the original script,” said director Stephen Thomas.

The Salem witch trials chronicled the journey of hysteria experienced by the small Massachusetts village that led to the persecution and deaths of many people.

NE student Garrett Brannan plays Reverend Samuel Parris. The character uses the Salem witch trials as a way to gain power and influence by falsely accusing women to deflect attention from his daughter and niece.

“[Parris] is awful,” Brannan said. “Most of the characters in the play are hard to redeem.”

One of the main characters who initiates much of the drama, Tituba, is played by NE student Tyler Tapia. She is accused of witchcraft at the beginning of the play, and although that claim is merely a half-truth, everyone around her is quick to judge and condemn. Much of the action after this centers around the escalating frenzy that immediately followed.

“It’s amazing how fast everyone around her would just jump onto her and say ‘Yes, she did it,’” Tapia said. “It’s surprising how fast people can jump on somebody without any evidence or proof of the accusations.”

While some of the players were rehearsing on stage with recorded drum beats, NE student and cast member Raul Gonzalez picked up a drum and started riffing, hoping to incorporate some live drums throughout the play.

“We’re experimenting today,” Gonzalez said.

Salem marshall John Willard is played by NE student Gavin Harper, who said to count on some unexpected comedy in this production. Harper recalled a scene that he said will surprise the audience.

“I can’t wait for everyone to see that,” Harper said.

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