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"20,000 Leagues Under the Seas" Opens at MPC!

Based on the novel by Jules Verne

Post Date:07/17/2017 12:10 PM

20,000 Leagues under the Seas

Based on the novel by Jules Verne
Dramatized by David Kersnar and Althos Low

Directed by David Kersnar

When a terrifying sea monster is spotted off the coast, renowned scientist Professor Aronnax and fellow explorers set out to investigate. They soon find themselves kidnapped and held under the command and spell of the mysterious Captain Nemo. As they circle the globe aboard the most advanced submarine the world has ever seen, they confront giant squid, bizarre seas creatures, and the monsters that lurk below and – within!


About the MPC production of 20,000 Leagues

MPC_20K_Leagues_pic#003-web“First,” says director David Kersnar, fending off what has become a common question, “It is not a typo, it is 20,000 Leagues Under the Seas…plural, with an ‘s’ at the end.” While most folks know the more commonly used “…Under the Sea,” the original French novel was actually titled Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Seas: An Underwater Tour of the World…plural, as in ‘the Seven Seas.’ That is not the only difference you’ll notice if, like most people, you are more familiar with various cinematic versions of Captain Nemo and his submarine, the Nautilus.

Director Kersnar has fleshed out the enigmatic Nemo’s back story, something Jules Verne did not do until his sequel, “The Mysterious Island.”  The director has also built upon themes of ecology and conservation that were hinted at in the original novel. “We are using up and destroying our world’s resources at a dizzying rate,” says David. “Must we harness and exploit the natural world and other cultures to survive, or can we live in harmony with the world and each other?” Captain Nemo doesn’t seem to think so.

Something not in the original novel was women. In casting Chicago actress Jenny Lamb as Professor Aronnax, the director has added a bold level of complexity and social commentary to Verne’s tale. “Aronnax is a female scientist trying to enlighten society to the wonders of nature,” David explains, “but in a scientific community dominated by men, she has to hide her gender to be taken seriously.”

And then there’s the 420 ton gorilla in the room…or onstage, to be more accurate. “The Nautilus?”  Kersnar asks with a smile. ”Everyone does want to know how we’re going to have a submarine onstage!” The starting point was Chicago designer Todd Rosenthal’s beautiful steam-punk style set, which has been brought to life by MPC Theatre Technical Director Doug Ridgeway, with the help of Technical Director Emeritus Dan Beck, and Master Carpenter Eric Maximoff.

It also involves some futuristic technology that Jules Verne would have loved. The front of our Nautilus is a giant Oculus window,” David Kersnar explains. “An Oculus uses virtual reality projections that allow us to go places and see adventures that you can only imagine.” Like a fight with a Giant Squid?  “You’ll just have to come see the show!” says the director with another smile.

20,000 Leagues Under the Seas is being produced in collaboration with The Lookingglass Theatre of Chicago. It premiers in Monterey on the Morgan Stock Stage of the MPC Theatre Company, then opens professionally in Chicago later next year at the Lookingglass Theatre.


---About the Director

Director and co-playwright of this new adaptation, David Kersnar joined Monterey Peninsula College last year as interim chairman of the MPC Theatre Department. He directed As You Like It in November and The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe in April. David is a founding ensemble member of Lookingglass Theatre in Chicago.  Kersnar has performed, designed and directed with the company since co-founding it in 1988. He served as the Lookingglass Artistic Director from 1988 to 1990 and from 1997 to 2000. With his diverse experiences as a teacher and professional artist, David has brought a new excitement and energy to the MPC Theatre Department. He has promoted student involvement in all aspects of the theatre’s productions, giving students new opportunities to learn and develop their skill.

--- About the Design Team

The Design team includes David Kersnar (Director)Doug Ridgeway (Technical Director), Todd Rosenthal (Set Design), Carey Crockett (Scenic Artist), Eric Maximoff (Master Carpenter), Gloria C. Mattos Hughes (Costume Design),  David Rigmaiden (Audio Design)Rick Simms (Composer), Derek Duarte (light Design) and Justin Gordon (Fight Choreographer).

ABOUT THE MPC THEATRE CHARITABLE TRUST

The Monterey Peninsula Community Theatre Company Charitable Trust is an independent 501(c)(3) created to support the MPC theatre program by funding expenses not covered by the State educational budget. 


Performance Dates and Times
:

 Day Date
Time
Details
Thursday
Jul 20
7:30 PM
Preview/Discount Thursday
Friday
Jul 21
7:30 PM
Opening night
Saturday
Jul 22
7:30 PM
Regular Performance
Sunday
Jul 23
2:00 PM
Matinee
       
Thursday
Jul 27
7:30 PM
Discount Thursday
Friday
Jul 28
7:30 PM
Regular Performance
Saturday
Jul 29
7:30 PM
Regular Performance
Sunday
Jul 30
2:00 PM
Matinee & Final Performance




Thursday
Aug 3
7:30 PM
Discount Thursday
Friday
Aug 4
7:30 PM
Regular Performance
Saturday
Aug 5
7:30 PM
Regular Performance
Sunday
Aug 6
2:00 PM
Matinee and Final Performance

Ticket Information:

For tickets visit our box office*, call (831) 646-4213 or purchase online.

Regular ticket prices are: $25 Adults, $22 Seniors, $15 Young Adults (16-21) & Military, and $10 Children 15 & under. Adults and seniors can purchase tickets 24 hours in advance for $20. Group discounts are available for parties of 15 or more.

Ticket to Thursday performances (Preview and Discount Thursday) are $12.50 each, or $10 for children. Adults & Seniors can also purchase ticket 24-hours in advance for $20 each.

20,000 Leagues Under the Seas is a live theatrical performance recommended for children 7 years old and above. Please note that infants, babes-in-arms, and children in strollers or carriers are not permitted.

Please note: Campus Parking is required for Thursday evening performances and cost is $2.00.  Some kiosks take quarters, others only accept dollar bills.


*The MPC box office is open Wednesdays, Thursdays & Fridays from 3:00 - 7:00 pm and 2 hours prior to performances
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