Mandragola Arthur Dirks
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(The Mandrake Root)

By Nicolo Machiavelli

Produced: February, 1982
Wayne State College Theater
Director: Arthur Dirks
Scenery: Arthur Dirks
Facility: Ramsey Auditorium

This is the classic immoral manipulative piece that Machiavelli wrote. I remain fond of this design. It has two locations, so the characters walked out one theatre aisle talking, and in the other and back up on stage. While they were out the crew changed the tablecloth (red or green check - they ARE Italians) and flipped the sign over. Styrofoam was critical because this show is about distortion. We also needed to say it was supposed to be fun. But it did require some creativity to make the balcony structural and "actable". That's 3-dimensional foam work on the cornices. When I designed it, I didn't consider that I wouldn't be able to light top.

I also directed. We ended the piece with a rousing rendition of Tom Lehrer's "Vatican Rag". It's a Lutheran town, so no repercussions.

Mandragola Mandragola

All original content © 2007 copyright Arthur L. Dirks