Allison O’Connor

The ides of March are upon us, as is Florida Southern’s production of Shakespeare’s famous “Julius Caesar.”

The theater department has taken on the challenging show by adding a twist, giving the show a mainly female cast.

Now, this contrasts to how theater used to be during Shakespearean times when men would play all the roles, including the female roles.

Mercedes Mendoza, a freshman double major in theatre performance and technical theatre, holds multiple roles in the show, holding to Shakespearean tradition. She portrays a plebeian, a senator and young cato.

Mendoza said the predominantly female cast gives the show a different energy but gives the actresses more of a chance to open up in their field and try new parts they would not be considered for with other shows.

“The dynamic is very interesting because some of us have to play more masculine characters than we usually would,” Mendoza said.

Mendoza is most excited for the fight scenes within the show, as they are expertly choreographed and take a lot of work to put on. She also said that the costumes used have to be washed after every run through because of the sweat and blood included in the scene.

“All the effects of the show are going to be really interesting to watch, and I’m really excited to see how they are going to work out,” Mendoza said.

Mendoza said that the audience will be most surprised by how real everything seems because the actors and directors have taken the script and turned it into a more modern version that an audience today can relate to.

“You’ll find a lot of similarities between the dynamic of prison life in general, and I think that is going to be surprising for some people,” Mendoza said.

Because the majority of the cast is female, Mendoza said that she felt more comfortable around her castmates and that they have been bonding more than they would have with a more male-heavy cast.

“It’s kind of like you’re sisters,” Mendoza said. “You have a lot more opportunities to bond over things, and I think that’s really interesting.”

It is very rare to see a college put on a female dominated show, especially a show from a time where women were not even allowed on the stage.

However, with the women’s rights movements happening now, it could not be a better time to do so.

Sophomore Mackenzie Blevins agreed with Mendoza.

Blevins said that she found it really exciting the department was putting on a female-dominant show.

“I think it’s good as long as we don’t do all-female productions for every show we do, but I think it’s really cool that they decided to make it the way they did,” Blevins said.

The show is sure to be full of twists, turns and great performances from all of the actresses.

“Julius Caesar” premieres Thursday, April 5 at 7:30 p.m. in Buckner theater. Tickets are available for reservation at the Buckner Theater Box Office.


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