The NIU School of Theatre and Dance’s upcoming Mainstage Series production is a Restoration comedy about three young women who find ways to bypass the rules of courtship and marriage.
Opening Thursday, Feb. 25, “The Lucky Chance” by Aphra Behn, is the story of three friends: one woman already married and two others about to be purchased for marriage by two rich older men. The women unite to end this tradition of marital servitude by whatever creative tricks and ploys they can muster.
Although written in 1686, Behn’s classic play has been reimagined by its director, Stanton Davis, by a leap across time from the high style of the English Restoration to the sights and sounds of the “clubbing scene” of London in 1968.
Davis’s vision is intended to reflect how both the English Restoration and the cultural revolution of the 1960s contained parallel issues related to sexuality, rebellion, freedom and expression. “This was what the 1960s and the English Restoration were all about,” Davis says.
“It’s about young people having control of their lives,” Davis adds. “Aphra Behn especially represents that, being the first professional female playwright in history.”
Davis has many personal connections to the music performed in the production; he performed these same ’60s classics when he was in a band.
To complete the era’s psychedelic setting, set designer Pauline Oleksy plans to use image projections and special lighting effects: “patterns, lights, videos and other trippy visuals,” she says.
“The Lucky Chance” runs from Thursday, Feb. 25, through Saturday, March 5, and is performed in the Huntley Middle School auditorium, located at 1515 S. First St. in DeKalb. Curtain times are 7:30 p.m. weekdays and Saturdays, and 2 p.m. Sunday and the second Saturday.
All non-package general admission tickets are $9 for students, $17 for adults and $14 for seniors. For more information, contact the NIU School of Theatre and Dance box office at (815) 753-1600 or email [email protected].