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Upcoming Performances

by Eugène Ionesco

directed by Will Detlefsen

November 14 - 21, 2015

Theodore and Adele Shank Theatre

About the Play

Over the course of three acts, the inhabitants of a small, provincial French town turn into rhinoceroses; ultimately
the only human who does not succumb to this mass metamorphosis is the central character, Bérenger, a flustered everyman figure who is initially criticized the play for his drinking, tardiness, and slovenly lifestyle and then, later, for his increasing paranoia and obsession with the rhinoceroses. The play is often read as a response and criticism to the sudden upsurge of Communism, Fascism, and Nazism during the events preceding World War II, and explores the themes of conformity, culture, mass movements, mob mentality, philosophy and morality. (wikipedia.com)

About the Playwright
Eugène Ionesco was a Romanian playwright who wrote mostly in French, and one of the foremost figures of the French Avant-garde theatre. Beyond ridiculing the most banal situations, Ionesco's plays depict the solitude and insignificance of human existence in a tangible way. (wikipedia.com)
About the Director

Will Detlefsen is a second-year MFA student. He most recently directed the world premieres of T. Adamson’s House & Variations and Toni Schlesinger’s The Mystery of Pearl Street, both at Dixon Place. Last fall he directed the New York revival of Sarah Kane’s Blasted. He was awarded the 2013 Drama League Fellowship and directed Wendy Dann’s The Stranger Plays, A Year With Frog & Toad, and a stage adaptation of Jean-Luc Godard’s film, Breathless at the Hangar Theatre in Ithaca. Detlefsen is also the artistic director of New York-based theatre company, MultiPurposeRoom, for which he directed Harold Pinter’s The Birthday Party and devised/directed Televise THIS!, BUILDINGS, and YEAR of the HIPPO. Detlefsen’s assisting credits include Terry Kinney, Rachel Chavkin, Young Jean Lee, and Robert Moss. UC San Diego credits: Death of a Driver, Hamlet, The Burial at Thebes. BFA: NYU.

Director's Statement

Berenger is the ultimate anti-hero, and Rhinoceros the ultimate anti-play. Ionesco's iconic satire on mindless conformity brings to light the dangers of mass mediocrity and senselessness. This play is part psychological thriller, part absurdist farce; a suspenseful dark comedy with a bite.

The Cast

Berenger - Michael Turner
Jean - Luis Vega
Logician/Fireman – Wylie Simpson
Daisy - Lorena Martinez
Botard / Waitress – Sarah Gray
Dudard / Gentleman – Hunter Spangler
Papillon / Café Boss – Caleb Kneid
Ms.Boeufs / Housewife – Katherine Ko
Grocer Woman / Fireman – Hayley Schneider


Percussionist/Vocalist – Leah Bowden
Saxophonist – Steven Leffue

The Creative Team

Director – Will Detlefsen
Scenic Designer – Raphael Zhao
Lighting Designer – Chao-Yu Tsai
Costume Designer – Jaymee Ngernwichit
Sound Designer – Steven Leffue
Projection Designer – Justin Humpres
Dramaturg – Emily Feldman
Vocal Coach – Eva Barnes
Choreographer – Anne Gehman
Asst. Scenic Designer – Matt Herman
Asst. Lighting Designer – Brandon Rosen
Asst. Costume Designer – Junior (Amanda) Bergman
Asst. Sound Designer – Mat Sweeny
Production Stage Manager – Kamra A.Jacobs
Asst. Stage Managers – Kasson Marroquin, Jackie Mullen

Performances Parking & Location

Located at: Theodore and Adele Shank Theatre

Parking Passes Required: Monday through Friday. Weeknight passes are $2 per vehicle from the vending machines located in the UC San Diego Theatre District/La Jolla Playhouse parking lots and entry display case. Please remember your parking space number. You will need it to purchase your parking pass.

Note: Machines take all major credit cards except Discover and when paying with cash you must use exact change, NO CHANGE GIVEN.

Parking Passes Not Required: Saturdays and Sundays


Cars without permits are subject to ticketing by UCSD Campus Police. The Theatre & Dance Department does not have the authority to waive and cannot pay parking tickets.






Nov. 14

Nov. 17

Nov. 19

Nov. 20

Nov. 21

Nov. 21
7:00pm     PREVIEW

7:00pm     PREVIEW

7:30pm     OPENING



7:30pm     CLOSING

Advance tickets for this production are available Monday-Friday, noon to 6 pm by calling the Box Office at 858.534.4574 or in person at the Theatre District’s Central Box Office at the Sheila & Hughes Potiker Theatre.

At-the-Door tickets, if available, can be purchased one hour before show time at the performing theatre’s box office at Mandell Weiss Theatre.

General Admission: $20
UCSD Faculty/Staff/Alumni Association, and Seniors (over 62): $15
UCSD Students/UCSD Alumni Association (with ID): $10

Theatre & Dance Faculty, Staff & Majors Only >>

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Tel: (858) 534-3791   Fax: (858) 534-1080