SDSU Theatre presents "The House of Bernarda Alba"

Thursday, March 7, 2024
Set by Atria Pirouzman under construction.
Set by Atria Pirouzman under construction.

The School of Theatre, Television, and Film at San Diego State University is proud to announce its upcoming production of "The House of Bernarda Alba," at the Prebys Stage from March 15th to March 22nd, 2024.

Directed by Peter Cirino, this rendition of Federico García Lorca's classic play delves into themes of oppression, familial duty, and the quest for freedom, all set against the backdrop of 1930s Spain. Cirino's vision for the production is deeply rooted in breaking down barriers, both metaphorical and societal, as well as shedding light on the consequences of living in a fascist environment.

"In 'The House of Bernarda Alba,’ we see the struggle of women trapped in a world of oppression… the play challenges us to confront the walls we build around ourselves and the societal constructs that hold us back,” says Cirino, “it's about breaking free from the constraints of tradition and embracing our own voices."

The set design, crafted by scenic designer Atria Pirouzmand, plays a pivotal role in bringing Cirino's vision to life. Pirouzmand's approach incorporates sheer fabric walls and intricate details, symbolizing the suffocating control exerted by Bernarda Alba over her daughters.

"There is a moment in the show where the daughters are working on the lace walls as if the daughters are making their own prisons and building these walls," explains Pirouzmand. "This was a metaphor of how the ideology of Bernarda Alba is passing to the next generation without them even realizing it."

Lighting designer, Mary Fulton, brings another layer of depth to the production with her nuanced approach to illuminating the stage. "It is a little difficult to pin the aesthetic for the lighting of this show into one aesthetic,” says Fulton. “I aimed to capture the heat of Spain's sunshine while highlighting the poetry of Lorca’s tragedy to light and so I narrowed into the idea of the veils that these women wear."

Behind the scenes, technical director Tamarra Sylber navigated the challenges of bringing Pirouzmand's design to fruition within budget and time constraints.

"Before we start the build phase there are multiple budget meetings and discussions that happen between the scenic designers and the technical director," says Sylber. "... it is through constant communication and willingness to negotiate and collaborate that we were able to overcome these challenges."

With its powerful themes and captivating visuals, The House of Bernarda Alba promises to be a compelling theatrical experience for audiences.

Tickets for the production are priced at $17 for general admission and $20 for premium seating.

Showtimes are at 7:30 pm from March 15th to March 22nd, with an additional matinee performance on Sunday at 2:00 pm.

For ticket purchases and more information, visit the SDSU Performing Arts District box office

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