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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Seize your last chance to see intimate Dracula

    Halloween is just around the corner, which means ghouls, goblins, and of course — vampires. If you prefer your vampires in blood-sucking, semi-erotic form and are a little tired of the Twilight craze, “”Dracula”” is definitely for you.  The Arizona Repertory Theatre is performing William McNulty’s adaption of Bram Stoker’s “”Dracula”” now until Oct. 31, just in the nick of time for Halloween.

    Audiences follow Dr. John Steward (Javan Nelson) and Professor Abram Van Helsing (Kevin Black) as they investigate the strange death of Mina Steward (Megan Davis) and other peculiar events since the arrival of the mysterious Count Dracula (Robert Don Mower). Although Stoker’s original novel was published over a hundred years ago, the story is one that is perfectly in sync with the Halloween spirit.

    The performance is packed with great costume and set design, as well as pyrotechnic effects that make the performance memorable. Without a doubt Connor Kesserling steals the show in his role as Renfield, an inmate of Dr. Steward’s insane asylum. Renfield’s charismatic nature makes you like him even though he eats insects and gives the protagonists a hard time.  The only downfall is his shoes — slip-ons with rubber soles that resemble Vans don’t exactly scream authentic to the play’s time period.

    Although the performance is set in Britain and contains characters from England, Ireland and Transylvania, some of the accents are linguistically confusing. Robert Don Mower’s execution of Dracula was very impressive, especially considering the fact that he is only a sophomore; however, his performance was undermined by his confusing accent. At times I found myself ignoring the content of his words because I wasn’t sure if his Transylvania-esque accent was supposed to be closer to German or Russian, although the later seems more appropriate out of the two.

    Overall, the performance is worth attending, especially given the timing. The cast is small, but intimate — the play allows you to connect with several different characters simultaneously. Plus, the smart set design and the pyrotechnic effects add a lot of “”oomph”” to the production. 

    The play is an adaption by William McNulty and directed by Brent Gribbs. The Arizona Repertory Theatre is a professional theatre training company of the School of Theatre, Film & Television here at the University of Arizona.

    For more information, visit

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