“Antigone” at The Glove Theatre Brings Life to a Classic
GLOVERSVILLE – The Glove Theatre on Main Street in Gloversville is one of the beautiful old theatres that harken back to bustling downtowns and large community arts events that could happen in any town of any size across the country. It was built in 1914 and hosted vaudeville shows before converting to a movie theatre where it could host audiences of up to 800 for features any night of the week. It was threatened to become a parking lot in the ‘90’s but thankfully saved from that fate by concerned citizenry who didn’t want to see it destroyed. We had no problem parking on Main Street a block from the theatre last Saturday.
We were there to attend the one weekend run of Antigone by Sophocles presented by Trust Your Gut Productions, adapted and directed by Michael Maricondi. It seems appropriate that an updated, sometimes profane take on this classic Greek text about following one’s own moral code in the face of political cowardice and expediency is being put on by a producing organization called Trust Your Gut. The producers rival the heroine for guts.
Antigone is the story of the Greek princess (a wonderfully direct and emotionally present Megan Hayner) who defies the law of the land issued by her Uncle Creon (also her guardian) and buries her brother Polynices. Creon is played with a high-volume bluster and lapel grabbing intensity by Mark Millan-Peek. Antigone embodies the moral imperative to do what is right, regardless of personal cost, even to the point of death. The character’s plight and courage came through clear and strong.
Maricondi has done an excellent job casting and created a fluid text that makes sense of all the divided and twisting loyalties. (Also featured are Creon’s wife Euridice played by Chivon Millan-Peek, Antigone’s sister Ismene fetchingly played by Olivia Hanifan, and Creon’s son Haemon sunnily played by Sonny Duross). There is also a fine scene with the soldier Ajax (Jay White) who must guard and spend the last hours with the prisoner, Ant.
That’s right, Ant. Maricondi has also nicknamed the ruler Uncle Cre in an attempt to contemporize it. It makes sense but it hits my ear wrong. I loved his use of the building, staging the action amidst the audience and spreading it out throughout the space. The actors had no problem playing in this vast theatre and filling it vocally. Well done.
It was exciting to see a theatre artist aim high and succeed on many aspects of this production in such a venerable old hall. I hope it’s the first of many trips to Gloversville and this beautiful space is used as imaginatively and supported for many years to come.
The rest of the fall season at The Glove features scary movies, a magic show and a Rocky Horror dance party on 10/28. I’ll certainly be looking for the next Trust Your Gut Production. Check out their complete calendar at https://www.theglovetheatre.com/.