To Kill a Mockingbird 1989 – Iowa State University Theatre Production

by Christopher Sergel, adapted from the book by Harper Lee

image of a tree

Scout, a young girl in a quiet southern town, is about to experience the dramatic events that will affect the rest of her life. She and brother Jem are being raised by their widower father Atticus and by a strong-minded housekeeper Calpurnia. Wide-eyed Scout is fascinated with the sensitively revealed people of her small town but, from the start, there’s a rumble of thunder just under the calm surface of the life here. The black people of the community have a special feeling about Scout’s father and she doesn’t know why. A few of her white friends are inexplicably hostile and Scout doesn’t understand this either. Unpleasant things are shouted and the bewildered girl turns to her father. Atticus, a lawyer, explains that he’s defending a young Negro wrongfully accused of a grave crime. since this is causing such an upset, Scout wants to know why he’s doing it. “Because if I didn’t,” her father replies, “I couldn’t hold my head up.” When she asks why take on such a hopeless fight—the time of the play is 1935—he tells her, “Simply because we were licked a hundred years before we started is no reason not to try.” He goes on to prepare Scout for the trouble to come. “We’re fighting our friends. But remember this, no matter how bitter things get, they’re still our friends.” Things do get bitter—to the point where Atticus props himself in a chair against the cell door of the man he’s defending and confronts an angry mob. Horrified Scout projects herself into this confrontation and her inconvenient presence helps bring back a little sanity. Atticus fights his legal battle with a result that is part defeat, part triumph. As Atticus comes out of the courthouse, the deeply moved town minister tells Scout, “Stand up. Your father’s passing!” This play is a meaningful work of art.

September 28, 29, 30, and October 6 and 7 at 8 p.m.; October 1 and 8 at 2 p.m. – Fisher Theater, Ames

The Cast

Arthur (Boo) Radley – Garry Geiken
Atticus Finch – Brian McIntire
Calpurnia – Suzanne Henderson
Clerk – Eric Winterhof
Courtroom Spectators – Rebecca Mastrofski, Dyanna Dawn, Heidi Riggenberg, Kelli Thoma, Lauren Miller, Robin Cato-Crawford, Susan Hilger, Dana Hall, Nancy Keith, Julie Benitez, Shelly Lidster, Lisa Waldon, Amy Brown, Larry Cooney, Pam Kaplanes, Kathryn Devine, Sanjay Israni, Michelle Studthoff, Reem Abukishk, Kimberly Bell, Gina Debenedetto
Dill – Evan Helmuth
Ewell – Sean Canuso
Foreman of the Jury – Leighton Allen
Gospel Innovator – Toni Jackson, Vanessa Marshall, Kassandra McGhee, Candace Fisher, Janice Owens, David Turner, Rhonda Young, Sony Roberts
Helen Robinson – Tina Seals
Jean – Kristin Halsey
Jem – Clint Zeimet
Jessie – Jocelyn Wilson
Jury Member – Mark Edwards, Mark Kaestner, Daniel Fitzhugh, Chad Hoch, Joe Libby, Leighton Allen, Robert Pfannkuche, Ken Green, Kirk Johnson
Lynch Mob – Mark Edwards, Robert Pfannkuche
Lynch Mob/Jury Member – Matthew Barkalow, Elvyn Villanueva
Maudie Atkinson – Anne Barr
Mayella Ewell – Marabeth Cooney
Miss Dubose – Shawn Daughton
Miss Stephanie – Ada Evans
Mr. Cunningham – Kirk Johnson
Mr. Gilmer – Mark Demarais
Mr. Radley – Mark Edwards
Reverend Sykes – Duwan Morris
Sarah Robinson – Brooke Johnson
Scout – Kara Zeimet
Sheriff Heck Tate – Joel Morton
Tom Robinson – Reggie Brunson
Tom Robinson – Robert Hanson

Production Team

Costume Designer – Pamela Wallize
Director – Debra L. Wicks
Scenic & Lighting Designer – George Dowker
Stage Manager – Lisa M. Glaus
Assistant Stage Manager – Mike Willis

Production photos by Patrick Gouran

Read about it in the Iowa State Daily.