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‘The War of the Worlds’ on stage at Delta College Dec. 10 thru 13

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POSTED November 20, 2009 2:31 a.m.
STOCKTON — Imagine that it is 1938: A time before cell phones, computers, internet, Twitter, Google, and TV. The only source for news was a newspaper or radio. You’ve just come in from dinner, settled yourself into a comfortable chair, turned on your radio for an evening’s entertainment; suddenly the regularly scheduled program is interrupted with news of “fiery crashes from the sky,” explosions, and the realization that these crashes were, indeed, landings of spaceships with hostile aliens! Their goal: annihilate everything and everyone on Earth!
And you thought your last “bad hair day” was a nightmare! What would you do? Stay tuned!

San Joaquin Delta College will present a staged version of the original 1938 Mercury Theater production of Orson Wells’ “The War of the Worlds” at the Tillie Lewis Theater, Thursday through Saturday, Dec. 10, 11, and 12 at 8 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 13. at 2 p.m. Admission is $12 for adults, $10 for students & seniors; reserved seating.

Orson Welles and his Mercury Theater Players ignited widespread national panic and paranoia with the detailed realism and committed passion of their radio broadcast of this science fiction classic. Director Dyanne Durr had previously directed her own adaptation of the radio play, “The War of the Worlds.” After considering numerous other options, Delta’s Center for the Arts drama staff felt Dyanne’s play might be an “interesting and fun choice” for Delta’s December slot.

“I took my adaption of Orson Wells’ 1938 production of the H.G. Welles 1898 novel,” said Dyanne Durr. “I made a few minor changes in the script and musical offerings and...voila!”

Durr says her Delta Drama students are rehearsing “our own version” of the original 1938 radio play by the Mercury Theater Players. “I met with many people this past year who were alive and listening to the original broadcast. They sought me out to tell me how much they enjoyed our live performances. They hoped others would have a chance to experience this classic radio re-creation. We hope the audience will enjoy our current production, of course! The Martians are coming...”

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