Mississippi State University students in “Deadwood Dick, or The Game of Gold” ham it up at rehearsal for this Wild West production set for April 12-14 at 7:30 p.m. at McComas Hall on the university campus. Admission is $10. Photo by: Courtesy photo
April 11, 2012 10:10:13 AM
Black-hearted gamblers, lily-pure maidens and stalwart heroes leap from the dime novels of the late 1800s to the McComas Hall stage at Mississippi State University April 12-14. The Theatre MSU production of Tim Taggert's "Deadwood Dick or The Game of Gold" begins at 7:30 p.m. nightly.
In 1876, Edward L. Wheeler started turning out novels about Deadwood Dick, a Robin Hood of the Black Hills. The popular series continued for 15 years. Taggert has reincarnated Wheeler's most colorful characters and exciting plotlines in this blood-and-thunder script, where long-lost daughters, gold mines and narrow escapes are the order of the day.
Communication professor Donna Clevinger directs the 25-member student cast in action that centers largely in Calamity Jane's Mantrap Saloon. There, Wild Bill Hickock, hero Ned Harris and the villainous Black 'n Red meet again.
"It's a fun show because it's so over the top," said MSU senior Grant Alexander of Starkville. He portrays Pong Ping, the Chinese cook who falls in love with Lily Blossom. "I think audiences will have as much fun watching it as we do performing it," continued Alexander, an English and psychology double major.
Chip Templeton of Starkville will be at the piano, providing "songs of the Gay Nineties" and special music. The longtime educator and businessman is an associate with the North Mississippi Research and Extension Center.
"It's indeed a privilege to work with these talented students in this very entertaining melodrama," said Templeton. "Musically this has been a challenge and positive learning experience for me, as there's no musical score. " The accomplished pianist will create the sounds and songs that set the production's mood.
How to go
Individual $10 general admission tickets will be available at the door. To purchase tickets online, go to comm.msstate.edu/dept /theatre/.
For more information, contact Clevinger at 662-325-4034 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jan Swoope is the Lifestyles Editor for The Commercial Dispatch.
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