Do you know where robots come from?
The Hilo Community Players will present the classic science-fiction drama R.U.R. – Rossum’s Universal Robots, at 8 p.m. Saturday March 15 at Hilo’s Palace Theater, and at 2:30 p.m. Sunday March 16 at the Kilauea Theater in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.
R.U.R. was written by the Czech playwright Karel Čapek in 1920, giving us not only the word ‘robot’, but also the plotline that, if we make robots too much like people, they will turn on us – a staple of science-fiction ever since. I’m producing and directing this performance in old-time-radio style, with actors in costumes and makeup, but carrying scripts. Music and sound-effects will be produced live on stage.
The play features many local actors and crew members. Chris Tomich, Saul Rollason, Dan Lindsey, Rob Hunt, Randal McEndree and William McGregor play the men who run the robot factory. Mimi Tincher portrays the idealistic woman who wants to liberate the robots; Maggi Aspin is cast as her skeptical maid. The robots are played by Azura Khan, Stephen Bond, Aaron Bannister, Galen Larson, Lauren Overbay, Joy Sever, Breandain Clarke, and Ray Ryan. The Announcer is Wolf Daniel Braun; sound-effects will be created by Steve Peyton, music by Rick Mazurowski, costumes by Robin Worley, and makeup by Bryan Furer.
Tickets for the Palace performance are $10 in advance, and for students with ID; $15 at the door. For advance sales, phone the Palace box office at 934-7010. All tickets for the Kilauea Theater performance are $10; for reservations, phone 982-7344.
R.U.R. is a co-production of the Hilo Community Players (HCP), the Friends of the Palace Theater, and the Kilauea Drama & Entertainment Network (KDEN). HCP has been entertaining the Big Island since its formation in 1938, and has presented a Shakespeare play in Kalakaua Park, free of charge, since 1978. Last September, HCP had a huge success with The Trial of Lili’uokalani; this July, HCP will present Shakespeare’s Antony and Cleopatra. The Friends of the Palace Theater produce a Broadway musical every October (last year’s was Young Frankenstein), and will produce a musical variety show the first weekend in May. Last month, KDEN produced the musical comedy Once Upon a Mattress; this summer, KDEN will present Gilbert & Sullivan’s Ruddigore – or, The Witch’s Curse.
Let me know if you’d like more information about R.U.R. Hope to see you at the show in Hilo or Volcano.