For those who didn’t get the chance to see it, “Phaedra” was a whirlwind of romance, strife, and turbulent emotions. This Roman tragedy, translated by French dramatist Jean Racine, is the tale of Phaedra (played by Carson Matthews), who foolishly falls in love with her own step-son, Hippolytus (played by Wylie Greer). Hippolytus, however, is in love with Aricia (played by Bethany Stubbs), and refuses Phaedra even after the supposed death of his father, Theseus (played by Basil Gist). The show is a complex story of betrayal and unrequited love that ultimately leads to many of the characters’ demise.
The cast spent over a month preparing for their roles, each of them with one or more complicated monologues in a language essentially unfamiliar to them. The cast was as follows: Kendra Bell as Oenone, Carson Matthews as Phaedra, Basil Gist as Theseus, Wylie Greer as Hippolytus, Noah Smith as Theramenes, Bethany Stubbs as Aricia, Rebekah Garcia as Ismene/Panope, and Trystan Digby as the Guard. Dr. Geary, the show’s director, spent countless hours preparing the blocking and priming his actors for the spotlight. His wife, Laura Geary, was head of costuming, finding beautiful chiffon dresses for the women that emulated Ancient Roman attire while simultaneously appearing new-age. The men were clothed in loose garments that also gave off the new-age vibe. Maggie Gayle, the new technical director for the theatre department, constructed a set that wowed both the actors and the audience, as it included multiple platforms and two gargantuan walls that were imitations of a castle wall by the seaside the ocean itself was painted on the floor.
“Phaedra” ran from September 27th to September 30th, and many of Lyon’s students, as well as the Batesville community, attended the performance. On the final day, Dr. Geary announced who would be nominated to participate in the Irene Ryan Acting Scholarship competition at the 2019 KCACTC Festival. The nominees for “Phaedra” were Carson Matthews for her role as Phaedra, and Kendra Bell for her role as Oenone. They, along with the two other nominees, Navy Griffin and Bethany Stubbs, are incredibly excited to be competing for the prestigious scholarship.
photo credit: Bethany Stubbs