From: NSM Today
Number of sources: Two
Word Count: 408
Date of Publication: April 9, 2017
UCF student Grace Boynton is “not a play person.” While she majors in theater and entertainment management, she is more interested in the music side of entertainment. But her friend convinced her to go see “Hedda Gabler”, Theatre UCF’s most recent production, and she was very impressed.
“It was absolutely amazing, I see why UCF is now top for acting in the state ‘cause it really was incredible,” Boynton, 19, said. “The blocking and staging was absolutely incredible. The set was great, the costumes, everything about it. It really, it was phenomenal.”
While audience reactions appeared to be mostly positive to “Hedda Gabler”, the play sold out less shows than “Romeo and Juliet”, Theatre UCF’s most recent play to be performed in the Theatre. While “Romeo and Juliet” sold out all of its showings in its first weekend, “Hedda Gabler” didn’t sell out any of its opening weekend performances, and ended up finishing with just two sellouts in nine performances.
The change in attendance between the productions could partially be due to the difference in popularity between the two plays. While both have been adapted many times, “Romeo and Juliet” is one of the most well-known plays of all time and is 300 years older than “Hedda Gabler”, which originally premiered in 1891.
Another attendance factor was that “Hedda Gabler” was performed in the black box section of the Theatre, where a sellout is just over 100 tickets. Romeo and Juliet was performed in the main stage section, which seats about 300. The worst attended show of Hedda Gabler’s run was the only Wednesday night showing, which sold just 35 tickets.
According to Theatre UCF’s website, its production of “Hedda Gabler” is, “A spellbinding drama of revenge, manipulation, sexual repression, deceit, and despair, climaxing in an ending that never fails to shock and surprise.” One of the biggest standouts from the performance was the acting.
“Everyone did a really great job,” theatre studies major Dylan Walsh said. “I’ve seen a lot of them in the other shows the past few semesters.”
“I thought the main girl, Hedda Gabler, was just incredible,” Boynton added. “She was always in character. All the characters were always on, never broke character once.”
While Romeo and Juliet may have sold out more performances than Hedda Gabler, the audience appeared to enjoy both of the productions.
“[Hedda Gabler] was a little bit easier to understand,” said Boynton, who also saw Romeo and Juliet. “I thought this one was pretty impressive.”