Rude Mechanicals to perform “Herod and the Slaughter of Innocents”

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The sprit of death seeks retribution on King Herod and his men (photo provided by Rude Mechanicals)

Shepherd University’s Rude Mechanicals are back this spring semester with yet another medieval play to perform. The Rude Mechanicals are doing a political take on “Herod and the Slaughter of Innocents,” which will be performed in rotation alongside the student written and directed plays from Shepherd’s “Page to Stage” program.

Dr. Mary Ellzey is faculty advisor of the Rude Mechanicals and director of “Herod and the Slaughter of the Innocents.” Ellzey translated the play from Old English herself alongside Shepherd alumni Alexandria Benedict.

The play tells the story of the dictator Herod, king of Judea, who orders the execution of all male children two years old and under in the vicinity of Bethlehem. The author of the play is unknown. But that doesn’t mean the emotions portrayed through the play are unknown to modern audiences.

“People will relate to this story,” Ellzey said. “Anyone can recognize an archetype. A tyrant is a tyrant a thousand years ago, and a tyrant is a tyrant today.”

“Herod and the Slaughter of Innocents” will be performed on March 31st and April 3-5 in rotation with the plays written, directed, and performed by Shepherd students. Tickets are $5 for general admission and $2 for students. Shepherd students get in free with a valid student ID.

The Picket’s “Ram News Report” will be conducting an interview with the student playwrights and directors, which will premiere on www.supicket.com next week.