‘Little Women’ offers modern take on 1800s classic


Photo: Emily Carey/The Simpsonian

by Emma Schlenker, Social Media Reporter

INDIANOLA, Iowa — This semester’s opera performance puts women front and center, touching on feminist themes while showcasing the talents of the female-led cast.

Set in New England after the American Civil War, “Little Women” focuses on four sisters’ daily lives play out in a series of flashbacks.

This year, the opera department has brought in a female conductor to help with the show.

Sophomore stage manager Jordan Williamson said having a woman conducting the show, “makes sure that the female perspective is appropriately featured.”

While their stories may be different from what people in the modern audience experience, Williamson said, “Modern day audiences would connect with the sisters’ plights and their lives after they have left home, much like college students may feel.”

Ellie Brazeal, a freshman who is helping with costumes, said this show will be easier to understand for people who haven’t been to an opera before, since it’s in English and is more modern than last semester’s show.

Rosa Gude, a junior playing one of the sisters, Meg, said this show will be more of interest to Simpson students because “many people have read the book and know the story.”

Unlike previous operas, this show is part of a storyline most generations have grown up with.

Gude said, “It’s definitely more of interest to the younger generations considering it is a storyline people already are familiar with.”

Williamson said this show is unique due to the emphasis on women in an era that didn’t normally give women a voice.

“The feminist experience and outlook that is performed is just as relevant in 2018 as it was in the 1800s,” she said.

Brazeal said this show is special because even though she was not cast, she is experiencing something new and still has the opportunity to help out.

“I love helping with anything when at all possible,” she said.

Williamson said, “The show is challenging musically but also stereotypically in its varying characters and their experiences.”

Simpson’s performances of “Little Women” will take place at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Feb. 9-10 and 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 11 in Pote Theatre.

Tickets for the show are currently on sale at simpsonmusic.tix.com and will also be available at the door 30 minutes before each performance.