Mystic Theatre capitalizes on communism

    This fall, Mystic Theatre will present a mix of communist and socialist royalty plays from the 20th century.

    p. The festival will include “He Who Says Yes” by Berthold Brecht, “The Corridors of the Soul” by Nikolai Evreinov, “Heartpiece” by Heiner Muller, selections from Muller’s “Hamletmachine,” as well as the poetry of Brecht.

    p. For the past three years, Mystic Theatre has been one of many theater groups that work to advance the arts on campus. However, it is unique in that it seeks to enrich audiences with thought-provoking dramas and comedies, and it provides an outlet for emerging student playwrights and directors to present their work to a larger audience.

    p. Mystic Theatre is completely student directed, acted and produced. According to Kaitlin Brunick ’09, treasurer of the Mystic Theatre Executive Board and producer of the festival, “All [of the works] are written by communist or socialist authors, or authors affected by these movements. These plays are also heavily rooted in conventions that challenge the melodrama of traditional theater.”

    p. Not only are these plays provocative in their viewpoint, but they also deviate from traditional theatrical form and structure.

    p. “Since traditional communism thrives on the notion of revolution, we’re trying to reflect that in what you’ll be seeing on stage,” Brunick said. “It is going to be very exciting, and we’re hoping to challenge everything the audience will be expecting of a traditional theater performance.”

    p. Brandon Stewart ’07 and Angelo Merenda ’07 founded Mystic Theatre their sophomore year as a venue of expression for emerging directors, actors and playwrights. “We specialize in unusual and artistic forms of theater,” Brunick said.

    p. The shows are not selected or cast by their own members, but rather by members of the campus as a whole. The Mystic Theatre Executive Board receives ideas from artists on campus, and if the board finds the play to be harmonious with Mystic’s ideals, they allow the director/playwright and his or her cast to use its resources.

    p. Mystic Theatre normally performs one show per semester, but the number of shows can fluctuate depending on the number of proposals received. After a student has spent 10 hours on a Mystic production, they become a member.

    p. Mystic Theatre has had a varied production history, with such shows as Edward Albee’s “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” and “Tragedy!,” an original musical comedy directed by Mike Johnson ’09 that was selected to be performed at the New York Fringe Festival. The festival promises to be an evening of rebellious fun, with everyone having an equally good time … equally.

    p. The festival will be held in the University Center Commonwealth Auditorium Monday Nov. 12 and Tuesday Nov. 13 at 8 p.m. Mystic Theatre decided to perform the show during the week to attract a bigger audience.

    p. In the communist spirit of giving, Mystic Theatre will be giving away a number of free tickets via students’ CSU boxes the week of the show. Otherwise, the tickets are $3 and are available at the door. For more information, contact


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