A shockingly good play comes to Mines

Posted 4/14/16

Back in 1816 a group of people spent a rainy day near Geneva Switzerland entertaining themselves by taking turns reading ghost stories. There were five of them and they were a rather creative group of people. Three of them were already established …

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A shockingly good play comes to Mines

Posted

Back in 1816 a group of people spent a rainy day near Geneva Switzerland entertaining themselves by taking turns reading ghost stories. There were five of them and they were a rather creative group of people. Three of them were already established authors and poets while another one would shortly emerge as an author whose work would be the most successful and captivating of the bunch. Eventually the discussion of the day turned to a suggestion that four of them try their own hand at writing the best ghost story. The gauntlet was thrown and eventually a winner emerged.

That story was penned by an 18 year old girl who had a dream involving some of the places she had recently traveled through in Europe and a rather vivid imagination. Her name was Mary Shelley, her soon-to-be husband was the poet Percy Shelley and the other authors were Lord Byron and John Polidori.

The story was Frankenstein. It was refined and published two years later and became one of the most popular horror tales in history that eventually led to so many movies and plays and revisions that it’s almost mind boggling. Frankenstein, Bride of Frankenstein, Frankenstein Meets the Wolfman, The Revenge of Frankenstein … This list goes on and on.

Well, after so many attempts at twisting the story into knots, one guy decided to make a parody out of the whole thing. That was Mel Brooks and in 1974 he released his version, Young Frankenstein. It was a huge box office smash and instantly became a classic. Not content to sit on his laurels, he eventually transformed it once again into a musical for the stage in 2007.

So what does any of that have to do with us here in Golden? Well, you are going to get an excellent chance to see that musical right here starting this weekend!

The Colorado School of Mines Little Theater company will be presenting the musical Young Frankenstein at Bunker Auditorium in the Green Center on campus. Performances will be Friday, April 15 at 7 p.m., Saturday, April 16 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. with the same schedule the following weekend, Friday, April 22 at 7 p.m. and Saturday, April 23 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m..

This promises to bring a fantastic cast, great music, incredible lighting and … Tap dancing! It should be a lot of fun for people of all ages.

Now, I don’t know about you, but when I read the description, one thing caught my attention. Incredible lighting. I’m imagining what one of the finest engineering schools in the world, with access to a vast array of cool things like Tesla Coils (Those are the lightning rod looking things you see crackling in all the Frankenstein movies) is going to come up with on stage for this production. It could be pretty awesome!

In addition to the show, there will be a free student art show on the second weekend. It’s presented in partnership with the Mines Creative Arts Council.

Tickets are $7 for students and $10 for non students, at least that’s what is lists on their website at http://goo.gl/3shl3w. You can order tickets there in advance. Elsewhere, I have seen non student tickets listed at $12. That may be the price if you buy them at the door.

The Green Center is located at 924 16th Street on the Mines campus here in Golden.

Now, a bit more trivia for you. Did you know that there actually is a Frankenstein castle? It’s in Germany, about 30 kilometers south of Frankfurt and Mary Shelley did travel near there before she wrote her story. Although there is no mention of a castle in her original tale, it may be where she heard the name Frankenstein.

Avenue Flashes, School of Mines, John Akal, Young Frankenstein, Tesla

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