Southern Miss Theatre Kicks Off Season with Drama Hedda Gabler

Published 4:48 pm Friday, October 1, 2021

The University of Southern Mississippi (USM)’s Theatre program, housed in the School of Performing and Visual Arts, kicked off its season on Sept. 30 with Henrik Ibsen’s drama Hedda Gabler, translated by Oscar-winning screenwriter Christopher Hampton. In-person and live stream tickets are available.

The production continues on Oct. 1 and 2 at 7:30 p.m., and a matinée performance on Oct. 3 at 2 p.m. Tickets are $15 for general admission, $10 seniors, military, faculty and staff, and $8 for students.

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Ibsen’s classic of realism depicts a woman’s struggle to carve out her own place in a male-dominated world. It focusses on the frustrated existence of its main character, Hedda, and explores core issues of power, control, and social expectation. Often praised as one of the greatest dramatic roles in theatre, Hedda, plays out her own fantasies and psychological games with those nearest to her to an ultimately devastating end.

Joann Shaver, MFA student and director of the production, believes this performance has created strong bonds between cast members, and their excitement will reflect in Ibsen’s play as they bring it to life.

“Hedda Gabler is a show about striving to achieve a personal sense of freedom,” said Shaver. “Throughout the show, the audience will watch Hedda’s ‘normal’ life begin to unravel. Our hope is that our performance will leave the audience with a new sense of purpose and understanding of their own life.”

“A big focus during production was working together to produce a remarkable show, as we mark our return to the stage,” Shaver added.

Jennifer Glass, MFA student studying scenic design and technology from Demopolis, Ala., was the scenic designer for the performance. She describes her experiences developing the set.

“I began by coming up with something called a design package where I would meet with a creative team to talk about the play, the themes, and the ways we could represent them,” said Glass. “Then we would create the physical environment and atmosphere.”

Please be advised that this production contains discussion of suicide, and as a simulation of one is performed a loud gunshot will be heard. This production is for audiences ages 13+.

If you or someone you know are experiencing thoughts of suicide, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800.273.8255