The Illusion

-By, Katie Tsai

Mystique. Love. Jealousy. Betrayal. Roxbury Latin’s fall production of The Illusion by Tony Kushner, which is adapted from Pierre Corneille’s 17th century comedic play L’Illusion comique, will captivate audience members with its humorous, intriguing and poignant plot. The play begins when Pridamant, an elderly man, visits the cave of a magician in search of his son, Clindor, whom he has not seen for 15 years. The magician shows Pridamant three increasingly complicated visions, each depicting Clindor’s interactions with a new love interest, the love interest’s scheming maid, and Clindor’s rivals. The play will feature three Winsor students, Lydia F. ’19, Maddie L. ’17, and Katie T. ’19, as well as ten RL boys in grades 10-12 and two girls from neighboring schools. The performances will be held on Friday and Saturday, November 18 and 19 at 7:30 p.m. in the Robert P. and Salua J.A. Smith Center at RL.

The actors have been working hard to connect with each other and to create a cohesive, believable story. When rehearsals began, the majority of the cast did not know one another well, but because many of the characters in the play have close relationships–the maids and their mistresses and the maidens and their love interests, for example, the cast has bonded over time. Additionally, most of the actors have dramatic moments as part of their roles, so they have been trying to play them accurately and with enough emotion. Truthfully, one of the hardest parts of rehearsing has been trying to stifle laughter after hearing someone’s bizarre lines or while watching other cast members’ funny characterizations.   

Maddie and Lydia shared their thoughts on why they believe audience members will enjoy the play. Referring to its puzzling plot, Maddie stated, “At first [they] will be confused, but they will be drawn in because they want to figure out what is happening.” Furthermore, they “should look forward to all the fight scenes because they will be awesome!” Lydia added, “So many of the characters are sneaky and like to play around with their fellow friends, and it’s very entertaining. I would pinpoint one scene that is hilarious, but quite honestly there are too many great scenes to pick just one.” If you would like to see the show, tickets may be purchased at the box office in the Smith Center before each performance.