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Comic twist to ‘Jekyll and Hyde’

BY Megan Gonzalez | THE RIDER

The student-led play, Chemical Imbalance, will be showcased starting October 12 at UTRGV’s Albert L. Jeffers Theatre in the Liberal Arts Building South on the Edinburg campus./Lesley Robles/The Rider
The student-led play, Chemical Imbalance, will be showcased starting October 12 at UTRGV’s Albert L. Jeffers Theatre in the Liberal Arts Building South on the Edinburg campus./Lesley Robles/The Rider.

“Chemical Imbalance,” a comical adaptation of Robert Louis Stevenson’s novella, “The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde,” will be presented at  7:30 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and at 2 p.m. Sunday at the Albert L. Jeffers Theatre in the Arts and Humanities Building.

It will be UT Pan American graduate Kent Smither’s fourth student production for UTRGV. His past university productions include “Macbeth” and “The Man of La Mancha.” This will be his first show since his retirement from Edcouch-Elsa High School.

“In the original, it leads to tragedy and all sorts of things; in this, it leads to comedy,” Smither said about the play. “So, we’ve got this man taking a potion to make himself evil and discovering a pair of twins, one of whom is the evil twin and one of whom is the good twin. He decides that their blood is going to be the key to his potion. So, there’s all sorts of misadventures trying to get the blood of these little girls, basically, so he can add it to his potion.”

Jennifer Saxton, an assistant professor for the Department of Theatre, said the show is a great Halloween and comedy show.

“It’s Jekyll and Hyde,” Saxton said. “So, it’s a familiar story but it’s told in a new, irreverent way.”

Originally, the department wanted to do a Halloween show every other year, but due to popularity, the plays have been performed every year for the last three years.

The cast is composed of Rene Gonzalez (who plays Euphronia Jekyll), Jacqueline Corte (Ambrosia Jekyll/Constable), Bruce Gutierrez (Henry Jekyll/Hyde), Valerie Prince (Calliope/Penelope Throckmortonshire), Ana Waldo (Rosamunda Dewthistle), Jonathan Tamez (Xavier Utterson/Police Lieutenant), Sabrina Rodriguez (Ivy), Selina Alvarado (Plodgett), and Daniel Garza and Gerardo Garcia (footmen).

Admission is $5 and tickets can be purchased at the box office one hour before each performance.

No children below the third grade will be admitted.

“This will be a studio presentation,” Smither said. “Some of the subject matter might be a bit more sophisticated.”

A dress rehearsal is scheduled at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday. Admission is free.

For more information, call Elva Galvan, theatre business manager, at 665-3581 or email elva.galvan@utrgv.edu.

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