The History of Cardenio
recreation of a play by William Shakespeare and John Fletcher based on a story from Cervantes "Don Quixote"
IUPUI Campus Center Theater
April 19-21 and 26-28, 2012
IUPUI celebrates the opening of their new Campus Center theater with a production of The History of Cardenio by William Shakespeare and John Fletcher.
The New Space
“It’s very exciting, IUPUI is becoming increasingly performative on this life sciences campus,” says director Terri Bourus. “It’s the grand opening of the Campus Center theater. And although this performance space will be used for a variety of other things, we have the privilege of opening it up with Mr. Shakespeare and Fletcher. There’s quite a buzz on campus.”
The Old-New Play
The History of Cardenio is mentioned in record from Shakespeare’s time, but it has been a lost play. Shakespeare scholar Gary Taylor has recreated the drama and says that it took modern technology to make it possible. “The text survives only in fragments and until the rise of massive data bases it wasn’t possible to identify which fragments were authentic and which were later spurious modifications. It’s only now possible to authenticate the fragments and put together the bulk of the play and then to try to fill in the blanks where parts of the text are missing.”
More About The Play
Shakespeare’s co-author was John Fletcher a younger contemporary. “Most people have never heard of him but he was actually more popular and more admired than Shakespeare in the 17th century,” says Taylor. “I also want to put in a plug for the inspiration for the play and that is the great Spanish novelist Cervantes and his masterpiece Don Quixote. Cardenio and some of the other characters come from Cervantes’ novel and they’ll be familiar to people who’ve read the novel, but they are transformed by the playwrights.”
A Little Bit More About The Production
“There’s original music,” says Bourus. “We have four student musicians who’ve rescored the music and updated it a bit without losing the original lyrics and without losing the tone of the play and in fact adding to the tone, the feel of it. So, it’s really exciting and fun. “