LTGI’s ‘Blithe Spirit’ Continues Through Sunday at TAMIU
Spirits continue to take shape for a hauntingly hilarious production as the Laredo Theater Guild International (LTGI), in collaboration with Texas A&M International University (TAMIU), stages Noel Coward's Blithe Spiritat TAMIU through Jan. 20.
Blithe Spiritdelves into the supernatural, telling the story of ex-wives, love and crystal balls. Madame Arcati conducts a séance at the home of protagonist novelist Charles Condomine and his wife, Ruth. While hoping to gather more information on his future novel, his plan fails after his first wife Elvira, comes back to haunt him. The production then explores a marriage tested as Ruth finds herself joining Elvira, as two "blithe spirits" find themselves haunting Charles for the rest of his life.
The production opened last week and continues through Jan. 17 – 19 at 7:30 p.m. A matinee performance is set Sunday, Jan. 20 at 3 p.m. All performances are at the Sam Johnson Experimental Theater.
General admission tickets are $15 and available online at https://laredotheaterguild.org, or onsite at Blue Top, located at 101 Hillside Road, Suite 10. Attendees are asked to arrive 15 minutes before the show begins.
Blithe Spiritshowcases the talents of Brian Manning-Spindt (Charles), TAMIU faculty member Dr. Ula Klein (Ruth), Ceci Long (Elvira), Diana Marcos (Madame Arcati), Gabriel Montante (Dr. Bradman), Allie Howland (Mrs. Bradman) and TAMIU administrative staff member Karol Batey (Edith).
Director and TAMIU alumnus Benito “Tony” Bondoc brings Blithe Spiritto life, fusing both the comedic and technical aspects of the production.
“When directing a comedy, you must always be two steps ahead of the audience. The jokes and gags must be tight to catch the audience off-guard. However, throw in a seance or two, and now you must be three steps ahead. As exciting as this experience has been, it's always difficult to orchestrate the lights, sound, crew, and actors to follow the same rhythm for the entire play,” explained Bondoc.
Bondoc cited his TAMIU study abroad experience in London as a driving force behind his interest in staging a production.
“During my time abroad, I watched some West End productions that helped shape my expectations for this show. From the moment an audience walks into the theater, they should immediately be taken into another world,” noted Bondoc.
Dr. Klein, TAMIU assistant professor of English, decided to participate in her first production with the LTGI after leading the study abroad trip. Working alongside her former students has been a particularly rewarding experience.
“We studied performance and Shakespeare together in an academic and tourist setting in London, so it's been very fulfilling to actually to do a theatrical performance with them here in Laredo,” said Klein.
It’s through performances like these that community support and awareness for the fine and performing arts in Laredo is kindled, asserted Klein.
“I believe these theatrical productions are incredibly important for our community. Organizations like LTGI keep the arts alive in Laredo. They stimulate creativity, bring people together, and educate members of our community about the arts… in addition to giving aspiring artists, actors, and directors the opportunity to hone their creative arts.”
For additional LTGI information, contact LTGI at https://laredotheaterguild.org Follow LTGI on social media on Facebook, Twitter, SnapChat, and Instagram.
For University information, visit tamiu.edu or the University’s official social media sites on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube.
The University’s Spring 2019 semester begins Tuesday, Jan. 22. University offices are closed Monday, Jan. 21 in a State-authorized observance of Martin Luther King Day.