The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

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Review: As You Like It

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The cast of “As You Like It” takes a bow. (Robeal Tesfamichael/The Sundial)

CSUN’s theatre department put on a live performance based on William Shakespeare’s comedy “As You Like It” in the Experimental Theatre at the Valley Performing Arts Center Friday night.

In Shakespeare’s, “As You Like It,” the Dukedom’s rightful leader, Orlando, has been usurped by his impulsive older sibling, Oliver. Orlando leaves the Dukedom in frustration and goes to the Forest of Arden, a place where people can reinvent themselves.

The other protagonist, Rosalind, leaves the Dukedom as well for the Forest of Arden in search of her banished Duchess mother and transforms herself into a boy in order to avoid detection.

Rosalind, having fallen in love with Orlando in the Dukedom, meets Orlando by accident in the woods and comes up with a plan to keep Orlando close to her. Oliver enters the forest as well in pursuit of his sister and brother Orlando in order to being him back to the justice of a corrupt court.

Being that Shakespeare’s “As You Like It” is a comedy, the cast members were playful with the crowd. Throughout the performance, cast members wiped themselves off with tissue and run over to a crowd member to give it to them and took quick breaks from talking from a script suggestive of Shakespeare’s writing and talk in Spanish or even Ebonics. They also added modern entertainment such as playing Hip Hop music during the dance at the beginning of the play.

Shakespeare’s “As You Like It” encompasses that despite how bleak life can seem, humans still have the power and opportunity to not just reinvent their lives, but the world that they live in; that people are only limited by their own thoughts of self-doubt; that even those who are evildoers can find redemption, repentance and fall in love.

The play was given a round of applause by the audience. The director and the cast members of the production stayed on the stage after the play to take questions from the audience and many asked about what the underlying messages of the play were.

“Love conquers all,” said cast member Avery Rodriguez. “And even though people are scared, we should all should take a chance to look for love, just like Rosalind did.”

William Shakespeare wrote an epilogue to “As You Like It,” in which Rosalind steps forward and addresses the audience to sum up the play. The students involved in the production created their own epilogue to the performance and perform a short song written by cast member Darien Ramirez.

“Though the war seems a coming, united our hearts as one we stand,” the cast said. “Hand and hand we stand but alone we fall apart. Hand and hand we stand and heart in heart we’ll do our part.”

The changes made to the epilogue were inspired by a rehearsal during the presidential election that occurred a week prior.

According to director Melissa Chalsma, despite the use of phones during rehearsal being frowned upon, the director and the students were constantly checking the election results and many were very upset about Donald Trump’s victory.

The production crew and cast members decided then to incorporate a message about being kind and considerate toward your neighbors regardless of the differences that they may possess.

“When we found out that Trump was going to win there was a lot of fear,” Chalsma said. “I asked the students what they would like to do about it and they decided they would like to change the epilogue and so I left it to them.”

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