Shackouls Honor College goes Roman with "Phormio"

The cast of the Roman comedy, “Phormio,” will perform in the Griffis Hall Courtyard.

This Tuesday and Wednesday, the Shackouls Honor College will present “Phormio,” a Roman play, at the Griffis Hall Courtyard at 6 p.m.

 

Attendees can watch the play for free but are asked to provide their own chair or blanket, snacks and dinner. In case of rain, the play will be held in the Bettersworth Auditorium at Lee Hall.

 

The performance is part of the Shackouls Honor College’s Classical Week, a celebration of Greek, Roman and other cultures in the ancient world. The play will be one of the first events of the week and will feature students from the Shackouls Honor College in every role.

 

The play “Phormio” is a Latin comedy written by Terence, an early Roman African playwright during the Roman Republic era of classical Rome. The comedy explores the love affairs of two male cousins, Antipho and Phaedria, in Athens.

 

Many students involved in the play have a rich history with the performing arts and history in high school. Maximus Smithey, a freshman biological sciences major, is one of them.

 

Smithey will star as Phaedria, a main character and son of Chremes, in the play. He said he enjoys performing theater.

 

“I’ve been in theater for three years in high school,” Smithey said. “Just continuing on with (theater) is something I’ve became really passionate about.”

 

Alexander Ketzle, a freshman aerospace engineering major, will star in the play as Phormio. Despite acting in any high school play he had been a part of, Ketzle said he was willing to try something new.

 

“Back in high school, I had done technical theater for all four years and was the head of lighting design. So, I figured I might as well go to the audition and apply as a technician,” Ketzle said. “Then Dr. Clevinger told me to come back for an audition after I had done the reading … That’s how I ended up here.”

 

Maddy Green, a freshman anthropology major, will play Nausistrata, the wife of Chremes, in the play. She has been involved in musical theater since sixth grade 

and said this experience has been thrilling.

 

“I’m so excited and have enjoyed getting to know everybody,” Green said.

 

Green also said that since joining the "Phormio" cast, she quickly made a close group of friends.

 

“It’s been great as a freshmanSince I’m a freshman and just moved in, it’s nice getting a group almost immediately that I recognize and got to see consistently,” Green said.

 

Donna Clevinger, a professor in the Shackouls Honor Collegewill direct the play. She shared her excitement about the play’s premiere and said she has witnessed a lot of growth from every student involved in the play.

 

“This is one of the best groups of students I’ve worked with,” Clevinger said. “They first came together as strangers, and in over four weeks, they’re leaving as friends.”

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