TWU Theatre takes onerous take a look at leisure and exploitation – Texas Lady’s College - STRATEGIES TO EARN MONEY



TWU Theatre takes onerous take a look at leisure and exploitation – Texas Lady’s College

Nov. 14, 2022 – DENTON – Exploitation of kids is a component and parcel of human historical past. However think about a world the place indentured little one labor didn’t happen behind the closed doorways of sweatshops, however out within the open, on stage for public consumption. The place kids might be scooped up off the road and put to work. And the place the legislation didn’t flip a blind eye to such exploitation however truly sanctioned it.

That is the world of The Youngsters of the Queen’s Writ, the second play of the Texas Lady’s College’s theatre division’s 2022-23 season. The play runs Nov. 16-20 at TWU’s Redbud Theatre Advanced on the north facet of Hubbard Corridor.

The play, a world premiere written by Steven Younger, TWU affiliate professor of theatre, and directed by Patrick Bynane, professor and director of the TWU theatre program, is ready in Elizabethan England and tells the story of Thomas Clifton, a historic determine who was kidnapped as a boy from the streets of London and pressed right into a boys’ firm.

“The boys’ firms had been simply what they gave the impression of,” Bynane added. “They had been theatrical firms of prepubescent boys who did grownup theater. They had been doing works like mythological tales about Venus and Sappho and the rape of the Sabine girls. However they had been all boys enjoying the women and men characters.”

A legislation permitted by Queen Elizabeth I gave church buildings the facility to create a system of indentured servitude to keep up a gradual provide of boys for his or her choirs. The legislation was later prolonged to the theatre, leading to firms of boys signed after they had been eight or 9 years previous as members of a guild and declared apprentices. When their voices broke and so they now not had that female sound, the boys had been expelled from the corporate and left on their very own.

“This period is understood for William Shakespeare and Ben Johnson and Christopher Marlowe and Richard Burbage and these legendary names in theater historical past that we kind of look upon as a golden age,” Bynane mentioned. “However we solely look upon it as a golden age if we’re taking a look at it very, very selectively. It was additionally an age by which human trafficking was simply thought of a part of each day life.

“We do not research these boy theatricals too intently in theater historical past,” he mentioned. “They are not seen as being notably vital to the general legacy of the event of the theater. However the reality is, the businesses had been wildly well-liked. A lot in order that in case you re-read Hamlet by Shakespeare, there’s a part in there by which Shakespeare simply goes off on the boy firms.”

After all, one needn’t return to 1600 to seek out examples of kid exploitation for leisure. Hollywood is plagued by tales like The Little Rascals, Drew Barrymore, and Britney Spears.

“That is kind of the opposite concern that we wished to sort out with the play,” Bynane mentioned. “There’s this very, very nice line that has at all times existed in any of the performing arts between leisure and exploitation. It is one factor if we’re speaking about 18-year olds or 25-year olds who’ve determined to place themselves out of there. It’s a very totally different factor after we are taking a look at a nine-year previous, an 11-year previous or a 14-year previous being put on the market.

“We’ve a scene by which Shakespeare and Burbage get right into a rip-roaring argument about whether or not they need to open the Globe to the boy firms. Shakespeare is adamantly against it as a result of he was a father and was not going to take any half in it. Burbage, being the son of a theater proprietor, takes the standpoint that everyone else is doing it, and we’re getting shellacked financially. So we’re exploring loads of these points.”

It is not misplaced on Bynane that the play is being carried out by younger individuals barely out of childhood. This 12 months’s firm has a number of freshmen who simply turned 18.

“The primary couple of weeks we had been educating them, they had been nonetheless minors,” Bynane mentioned. “And I feel that is likely one of the explanation why we pursued this story. It is likely one of the challenges, as a result of me, as a 50-year previous man, I am taking a look at this from the lens of historical past and from my very own place as a guardian and my very own sense of concern at what might have occurred and all of that. However to our college students, there’s an immediacy to the subject.

“And in some circumstances we’re depicting violence in opposition to kids. The apprentices weren’t managed by reasoning or being given a timeout, they had been bodily punished, typically brutally so. There was a component of intercourse trafficking that at all times hung over the theaters at that period, and now we have motive to imagine that the youngsters had been doubtlessly abused in that approach.”

Clifton’s was a well-known case that went by way of the English courts, finally leading to Clifton being given his freedom. Clifton is portrayed in The Youngsters of the Queen’s Writ by Adrian Theisen, who studied the story earlier than taking over the position.

“It’s important to be conscious,” Theisen mentioned. “The factor is, Thomas desires to be a performer. It is simply that the way by which he’s a performer is going on with out his consent. He is carrying a tutu and he is received to rise up there and simply do it. So I’ve to consider, if I had been watching this, how is the conduct of the actors affecting the story? As a result of it does have a profound impact on the story. If I rise up there and I am doing one thing that isn’t consistent with the gravity of the scenario, that creates a unique story within the thoughts of the viewers.”

It is a dramatic shift for Theisen, who just some weeks in the past was portraying a 45-year-old within the season-opening The Impact, which included a monologue by Theisen’s character holding the mind of his late father.

“We began rehearsals for this the day after we closed the final present, so it was speedy,” Theisen mentioned. “I feel we did our first learn by way of whereas we had been doing The Impact, so nonstop all through. It’s undoubtedly form of odd as a result of what I am doing may be very totally different on this one than what I used to be doing within the final one.

“I’ve achieved a number of exhibits directly earlier than the place I must do a two-hour rehearsal one place after which a two-hour rehearsal in one other,” he added. “You get used to it.”

As for the violence within the play, that is one thing the solid has practiced endlessly to get the punches and slaps shut sufficient to be plausible however not shut sufficient to hazard the actors.

“We’ve a really lengthy battle name firstly of each rehearsal,” Theisen mentioned. “It is a lot extra boring than you assume as a result of we simply do it time and again and over and over and over. By the tip of the method, you are like, ‘Oh, God, I am sick of punching individuals.’ Rehearsal is like dancing. If you wish to not harm your self, do it over and over till you simply cannot stand to do it anymore. Then the issue is getting complacent. So you’ve a brand new set of points, however when you’ve it in your muscle reminiscence, it is quite a bit simpler to maintain one another protected. There’s quite a bit that goes into stage fight, like eye contact, ensuring that you just’re at all times in psychological management of the scenario. Do not let your feelings get the higher of you.”

Tickets for The Children of the Queen’s Writ are $10 for adults, together with TWU school and employees, and $5 for college kids, kids and senior residents. The efficiency on Saturday, Nov. 19, at 2 p.m. is a pay-what-you-can efficiency for TWU college students if tickets can be found. Tickets are on a first-come, first-serve foundation. Money solely.


  • Wednesday, Nov. 16, 8 p.m.
  • Thursday Nov. 17, 8 p.m.
  • Friday, Nov. 18, 8 p.m.
  • Saturday, Nov. 19, 2 p.m.
  • Saturday, Nov. 19, 8 p.m.
  • Sunday, Nov. 20, 2 p.m.

The Youngsters of the Queen’s Writ accommodates grownup language and content material, violence, and sexual conditions. Viewer discretion is suggested.

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