Pools of People

Students swarm the University Box Office in the lobby of the Constans Theatre and the Reitz Union Colonnade.

Alligator File Photo

UF School of Theatre and Dance’s staging of Shakespeare’s “King Lear” will encapsulate the deception and intrigue of tragedy.

This interpretation, directed by Judith Williams, runs from Friday to April 15 in the Constans Theatre on campus near the Reitz Union.

The play highlights King Lear’s descent into madness as he steps down from his throne and passes the kingdom down to his three daughters.

Michael Krek, a UF fine arts in acting master’s student, said the themes of forgiveness and mistakes are still relevant today.

The surrealist point of view highlights the persistence of time, Krek said. He refers to the perspective as a reflection of Lear’s madness.

“Shakespeare’s plays have a universality to them that sort of transcends time,” he said.

Krek, who plays the titular role, noted the magnitude of taking on such a character.

“On one hand it’s like an opportunity of a lifetime,” he said, “but on the other hand, you feel woefully inadequate in the role, because it demands so much of you physically and mentally and emotionally.”

The journey of redemption is a theme Krek finds important in this show.

“We all do things that we’re not proud of, say things we shouldn’t have said, and we hurt people that we shouldn’t have hurt,” he said. “Lear, at a certain time in his madness, understands that.”

The actors work together with the set, ensemble and storyline to create the show.

“Basically your job is to merge all those factors into what will hopefully be a cohesive story,” he said.

Tickets are available through the University Box Office or online at ticketmaster.com. The show is $18 for the general public, $15 for seniors, UF faculty and staff and $13 for students. Tickets can also be purchased prior to the performance at the theater.