A Passion for Theater | Faculty Rave, Anna Witte

Anna Witte

Mark your calendars! The annual Spanish play production, directed by Lecturer Anna Witte, promises romance, intrigue, good guys, bad guys, a damsel in distress and more!

This year’s performance is a celebration of Federico García Lorca’s theatre, poetry and music featuring both actors and puppets on stage at the Cabaret Theatre in Hutchison Hall. As usual, students from Dr. Witte’s SPAN 449 course are responsible for all aspects of staging the play, including making the puppets, designing the costumes, props, lobby display, program, doing dramaturgical research, and promotion. And, of course performing! We are also happy to welcome back to the stage David Miles and his accordion in the role of Mendigo.

According to Witte, whose devotion to this project is appreciated by all, the yearly play production grants students a unique opportunity to put language and culture into action. “Over the years I have seen many students’ language skills blossom as they grow into their roles on stage, while they at the same time come to understand the subtleties of a literary work in ways that are sometimes difficult to realize in the conventional classroom,” remarked Witte.

Witte is no stranger to theater. She has been involved with theater since her student days in Bonn, Germany and specialized in theater history during her MA and PhD studies at UT Austin. In Austin, Witte organized a Spanish language theater group called Teatro El Tabanito (Theater for Children). 

“During my years at Eastern Washington University in Spokane, I became very active with the Civic Theatre and my move to Seattle in 1995 was motivated by a year-long dramaturgy internship at the now defunct Group Theater,” said Witte who has worked as a dresser, house manager, stage manager, actor, director and dramaturge. Witte has been involved with the play production class at UW since 2004.

The Billy-Club Puppets (Los Títeres de Cachiporra) is a play written originally for puppet theatre by the twentieth-century Spanish playwright and poet, Federico García Lorca. Written between 1922 and 1925, the story follows a young ingénue, Rosita, who loves the poor Cocoliche, but has to marry Don Cristobita, a lecherous old man in love with the bottle who carries a big billy club. Mayhem ensues when yet a third pretender appears: Currito, who left Rosita many years ago to seek fame and fortune abroad. 

García Lorca subtitled his play "Tragi-comedy of Don Cristóbal and Miss Rosita: A Guignolesque Farce in six scenes and an announcement."

PERFORMANCE DATES AND TIMES:

Thursday March 13th

Friday March 14th

Saturday March 15th

TIME: 7:30 pm

PLACE: Cabaret Theatre, Hutchison Hall (School of Drama)

Many thanks and kudos to Anna Witte for her work and enthusiasm, which have made this project a reality!

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