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April 14, 2003
OSWEGO -- The stage is set to provide a fresh take on "The Diary of Anne Frank" for SUNY Oswego's upcoming theatre production opening Friday, April 25.
Set designer Joe Rial and director Paul Savas, both of the SUNY Oswego theatre department, wanted to take a different approach from what most previous productions of the play have taken. Rial said that past productions have utilized sets that are more like a "concentration camp," but he did not think that would be the appropriate here.
Through his research in Holland, Rial said he learned that the annex where the Frank family hid from the Nazis was more luxurious than where other people were living at the time. He said he wanted to give the audience a sense of this, while also depicting their hardships.
The set needs to illustrate the enclosure for this group of people, yet at the same time be able to open up to show the escape that Anne would find in her mind, Rial said. He hopes that the use of an open ceiling and special lighting techniques will allow this to happen.
Paying close attention to details was also important in designing the play, Rial added. Since the real Franks stayed in this home for two years, items had to change and become worn. Rial carefully selected props and found ways to employ them to depict the lapse in time.
Rial said giving the audience a sense of "foreignness" was important as well. He was careful to note cultural differences and strived to create a set that is true to the time and place of when and where these events occurred.
A preview performance will be held at 8 p.m. Thursday, April 24, with all seats available for $5.
"The Diary of Anne Frank" will open at 8 p.m. Friday, April 25.
Additional 8 p.m. performances are scheduled for consecutive Saturdays, April 26 and May 3, with a 2 p.m. matinee on Sunday, May 4. Tickets are $10; $9 for seniors, students and children; and $7 for SUNY Oswego students.
For reservations, call the Tyler Hall box office at 312-2141.
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