MAAA first-year Anne Stichter’s Shakespeare obsession

Meet Anne Stichter. She loves Shakespeare. So, of course, we were thrilled to welcome Anne for a behind-the-scenes look at our upcoming production of MACBETH. Keep an eye out as Anne takes over our Twitter to keep you up to date on the Bard’s infamous tale of murder and betrayal. With swords. And witches. We love it!

Anne Stichter - headshotAnne Stichter is a first-year student in the Master of Arts in Arts Administration program at SPEA. Born and raised in East-Central France and London, England, she completed her B.A. in Theatre and Complementary Psychology at Anderson University in Anderson, Indiana. Anne reads and studies Shakespeare for fun, teaches workshops in the Unrehearsed Cue Script Technique, and hopes to inspire the modern-day world with love for the Bard.

“Woah…This feels just like the Globe…”

When I first entered the Wells-Metz Theater to see the setting for IU Theatre’s production of Macbeth, these were my words. From the stacked balconies to the color of the railings, the configuration of IU Theatre’s black box space is viscerally reminiscent of the theatre associated with Shakespeare himself.

I spent my middle and high school years in London, England, which, while pretty cool in itself, also upped the ante significantly for field trips. A particularly memorable one took my English class to the Globe to do a workshop with the cast of Othello, after which Iago took us out into the theatre and took us on stage. Yes, I’ve been backstage of the Globe Theatre, and it’s a magical place, almost mythical. It’s full of history and tradition, and the presence and weight of words.

Fast-forward to grad school, where I am entering the Wells-Metz at the second balcony level. It felt the same as walking into the Globe, but with a darker, more industrial, more Steampunk feel.

The effect of stacked balconies is difficult to describe, but my closest approximation is the feeling of gazing down into a valley from the top of a mountain, only contained within a building. It’s a feeling of excitement, a bit of fear, safety in the face of peril, all with an eagerness to get to the bottom, to see what will be there.

In the Wells-Metz, all of these impressions and emotions combine with the feeling of an industrial, rectangular cauldron. Standing on the platform that sits in the center of the acting space, I felt surrounded. On all four sides are seats, those ahead and to my sides rising up three levels. Above my head hung two large rings. I stood at the bottom of the cauldron, and a feeling of inevitability, of being trapped, grew upon me – truly the design of the space strongly emulates Macbeth’s situation as the play unfolds.

I hope you – whoever you are, reading this – will take the opportunity to come see Macbeth in this space. From the moment you enter you can feel the energy and mysticism that characterize this piece, and it’s a unique and powerful example of how Shakespeare’s work is used today.

If you go:
MACBETH – FEB 5-13 in the Wellz-Metz Theatre, 275 N. Jordan Ave.


About IU Theatre Department

Welcome to the 7th & Jordan blog. This blog is a peek behind the curtain at the productions and people at Indiana University's Department of Theatre, Drama, and Contemporary Dance.
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