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It Can't Happen Here

Scenic Design

The Cornish Playhouse

Directed by Desdemona Chang                     Charge Paint Jessica Christensen

Props Coordination by Jordan Couper          Technical Direction Jamie Nathan

Lighting Design by Roberta Russell                Show Photography by Chris Bennion

For this production of It Can’t Happen Here, we focused on the dramatic contrast between Part 1 and Part 2 of the play. In Part 1 we saw the quiet town of Fort Beulah, Vermont, and got a feel for the general political leanings of the town (conservative and nationalist) and the contrasting opinions of our main character, Doremus. The first half of the show had some foreboding qualities, but was mostly characterized by the American Dream in full swing. It was, however, remarkably unstable and was in fact all a facade. The terrifying but charismatic Buzz got elected and clamped down quickly on a militaristic rule. The climax of our production was when Doremus’ son in law was ordered executed, and the facade of the American Dream broke down entirely and Doremus was utterly disillusioned. Part 2 was bleak and horrifying, a worst-case dystopian image of the future of the United States. Doremus was forced to write propaganda for Buzz, then arrested and put into a concentration camp where some of his friends died. He escapeed and joins the ‘new underground’ in Canada. Part 1 was saturated with idealism and Americana, whereas Part 2 was empty, dark, and terrifying.

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