Blood Wedding Upholds Its Title

By McKenzie Potter-Moen, Arts Editor

In the world between blades and orange blossoms, “Blood Wedding” ignites an audience.

Directed by Company of Warriors members Will Marsh, junior, and Amelia Hillery, senior, the play took place Oct. 27-28 and Nov. 3-4 on Cleveland’s main stage.

The stage opened to Amelia on closing night. She spoke on how she came to find and love this play. “Blood Wedding,” written by Federico García Lorca in 1932 and first performed in Madrid in 1933, was explosive for its time. The play defies marital expectations when the country of Spain was already fragile before a civil war. The Company of Warriors managed to relay themes back to this decade while still being relatable to Cleveland’s community.

One central conflict is the love triangle involving a bride (Claire Miller), the groom (Cyrus Johnson) and the bride’s unruly ex-lover Leonardo (Caylum King). This was pulled off well, as characters such as the mothers of the newlyweds (Mia Bolte and Anna Christen) kept an appalled and concerned manner towards the behavior of their children, not so much for their sake, but for the sake of societal standards.

The directing, acting and even the brightness of the lighting helped clue the audience into the emotional realities of the time. Cleveland students reacted earnestly to this conflict between the heart and the world — in high school there are few things more familiar.

The play was presented on a thrust stage, which gave an intimacy that allowed an audience member to appreciate the detail in both the costumes and the stage. Thrust stages give closeness as it’s a stage on top of a stage, so the audience sits on the stage too, as they did for “Blood Wedding.” The stage, colored in brown and green, was painted to appeal to both an inside and outside setting. It seemed clunky to have wooden boxes on the stage, but it served the actors so they could change the set while talking. It wasn’t the most appealing set, yet the creativity was appreciated as it brought the audience to different places. The mountains had an interesting rust color on them, which complemented the lighting.

The costumes were accurate to the time, and when it came time to shed blood, it looked aesthetically gross as blood would. The actors also upheld the violence, while not always in the intonation of their dialogue, often within their shrieking. During the fighting scenes along with the good choreography, the violence was very raw and satisfied its intent.

The singers of this play were absolutely amazing. Nora Burkhartsmeier received some oohs and ahs from the audience.

When all elements were pulled together, “Blood Wedding” was a staple success of The Company of Warriors. It reflects well on their growth, as this is the directorial debut for both directors.