Published April 11, 2016

‘The Rover’

Theatre department to present Aphra Behn’s swashbuckling Restoration comedy April 21-24
  • Swordplay figures prominently in Aphra Behn’s “The Rover,” which will be staged April 21-24 at Monmouth College’s Fusion Theatre in downtown Monmouth. Pictured from left are Michael Hargrove (as Don Pedro), Patrick Crawford (as Don Antonio), Zach Platt (as Willmore), Zachary Lampkin (as Belville) and Adam Duffield (as Frederick).
For the final production of a Monmouth College Department of Theatre season dedicated to women playwrights, Aphra Behn’s swashbuckling Restoration comedy The Rover will be presented April 21-24.

The 17th-century tale of intrigue and female power will be performed at the College’s downtown Fusion Theatre.

The Rover is directed by assistant professor of theatre Emily Rollie, who finds contemporary and personal connections to it.

The Rover was appealing to me because it features strong roles for women and comments on typical gendered attitudes of the time period,” she said. “Unlike many other Restoration comedies, the women in The Rover display some agency. They have and make choices for themselves – actions that are largely absent from other plays of the era.”

Set in the late-1600s in Spanish-occupied Naples, Italy, during the annual Carnival Festival, The Rover centers around the adventures of two sisters, Hellena and Florinda. The two women are forced into undesired fates by their domineering father and brother – Hellena to a nunnery and Florinda into a loveless marriage.

Taking their lives into their own hands, the two sisters, accompanied by their cousin Valeria, disguise themselves and venture into the Carnival festivities. There, they meet a group of handsome British cavaliers, who also have ambitions for carnivalesque entertainment.

Filled with masks, mistaken identities, love, intrigue and swordplay, the play’s multiple plot lines bring together the young ladies and their dashing cavaliers in a boisterous tale of hijinks, hilarity and a little hint of danger.

The Rover will be staged at 7:30 p.m. April 21-23 and 2 p.m. April 24. Tickets are: $7 for adults, $6 for seniors, and students and $5 for students and employees with a Monmouth College ID. They can be purchased online at www.monmouthcollege.edu/box-office. The Rover contains mature content and is not recommended for viewers younger than 13.
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