Worried about history repeating itself? So is Delta’s drama department by their spring play choice.
Delta’s Drama department will be putting on a play adaptation of George Orwell’s novel “1984” through the end of April to beginning the of May.
The dystopian play follows protagonist Winston Smith in the year 1984, when most of the world’s population have become victims of a constant war, omnipresent government surveillance and propaganda.
Winston decides to defy the ban on individuality and explores his thoughts and a personal relationship with Julia, a strong-headed, rebellious young woman.
The overall message is totalitarian governments such as Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia are harmful in the long run. When Orwell wrote “1984” in 1949, he was concerned governments were moving more toward totalitarianism. He worried these governments would limit individualism and freedom of speech.
“We chose ‘1984’ because we find it important at Delta College to work on material that will not only challenge students in their study of drama, but to also address current social issues with which the students and community are wrestling,” said Associate Professor of Drama and Acting Greg Foro. “After the election in 2016, the novel ‘1984’ returned to the New York Times bestseller list with a 9,500 percent increase in sales. That alone tells us that the story is relevant again after all this time and that our society as a whole is still wrestling with these issues.”
Currently, the student actors are undergoing rehearsal and blocking different parts of each scene. They also found connections to each of their characters.
“Julia’s very passionate about her beliefs and what she thinks about the world around her and issues that she thinks needs to be changed and I feel like I’m also very much like that,” said student Daniela Santiuste-Loera (Julia). “I know what I believe in and I know what I stand for and I like to advocate for things to be changed if I can find a way.”
During rehearsal, the cast and everyone involved in the production found themselves discussing similarities between the play and the current political climate.
“My favorite part of being in ‘1984’ is really getting to dig deep into the core issues and what we want the audience to leave the show thinking about and getting people’s minds thinking that if we don’t change some stuff, everything could very much end up like ‘1984,’” said Santiuste-Loera.
Santiuste-Loera and Mike Sincari (Winston Smith) are pursuing acting as their main careers. Sincari is also interested in directing.
“My favorite part is I get to rehearse with my friends, who I consider family,” said Sincari. “I love rehearsing with these people. Rehearsing and being around people who want to act makes it more fun.”
“1984” will run at 7 p.m. on April 26 and 27 as well as on May 3 and 4. There are also showings on April 28 and May 5 at 2 p.m. in the Tillie Lewis Theatre. Reserve tickets via box office or over the phone at (209) 954-5110.