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Some pictures of Calderon's "Life is a Dream"
a spiritual allegory or "auto sacramental" written in 1677,
forty years after his famous court drama of the same title.
These photos feature the original cast, a remarkable
group of students from Marquette University.
Bold text under each photo is from the script.
These are followed by press about the show.

Preshow; Actual size=560 pixels wide

"In the beginning, when God created the heavens and the earth,
the earth was a formless void."

Gordon Spencer of the Shepherd Express Metro wrote: "Black hooded figures
slowly assemble in a circle, bow to each other, and begin to mingle.
Gradually they come together in a dense, tight nucleus, ready to explode.
Thus begins director George Drance's fascinating, dynamic conception
of the beginning of life in Calderon de la Barca's
"Life is a Dream".

trinity and water at MU; Actual size=560 pixels wide

Power, who being eternally infinite was able. . .
Wisdom, who knew from the beginning to make it so. . .
Love, who, proceeding from these two, also desired it."

From the same review: "The staging never ceases to fascinate, enriched by
remarkable talent for evoking highly skilled movement from student performers
and by Sally Duback's wonderful, colorful, array of puppets.
They and the other fine production values serve an unusual project,
looking most like a lavish ritualized experience
from centuries gone by."


These puppets of Power, Wisdom, and Love
were based on this famous 16th century icon
by Andrei Rublev. It is one of the most beautiful
depictions of the Trinity in all of history.
Sally Duback made these puppet faces after those in
the icon, and Debra Krajec and Tina Campbell
added their costume magic to this concept
and Sally's execution.
I think both Rublev and Calderon would be impressed.

creation scene; Actual size=560 pixels wide

"Come, Run, Fly you Elements!"

". . .a play that encompassed the creation of the universe, the fall of Lucifer and his angels,
the creation and redemption of Man, the defeat of evil and the birth of human understanding--
with song, dance, and much-larger-than-life-sized puppets in a total theater extravaganza."
--Bill Cain, writer for theater and film

final image; Actual size=560 pixels wide

". . .Mercy, refuge and forgiveness"

"To see so breathtaking a production was truly a remarkable privilege."
--Max Harris, Executive Director of the Wisconsin Humanities Council.