By MAUREEN JONES
The lives of four sisters and their experiences as their father is away at war are displayed in Louisa May Alcott’s “Little Women: Part First” which opens Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. at the Margetts Theater, Harris Fine Arts Center. The show is almost sold out, with tickets only available for Nov. 18 and 19.
This adaptation focuses on the period of time in the book between one Christmas to the next, said Char Nelson, director of the play and a second year graduate student from Provo.
The play is set during the Civil War in Massachusetts. The March sisters and their mother attempt to cope with life without much money and with Mr. March away at war.
Alcott wrote “Little Women” in two parts, said Alisha Christiansen, creator of the play and a graduate student from Boring, Ore. Christiansen split the play up in accordance with how the book was divided, she said.
“Movies leave out too much detail from the novel that they are adapted,” she said. This was part of her motivation for choosing to adapt the novel into a stage production, Christiansen said.
The dialogue and narration that are present in the play comes straight from the book, she said. The play format also allowed her to be truer to the book without changing the language.
Christiansen was able to develop her script in the Playwrights/Directors/Actors Workshop, a BYU elective class. She said this was beneficial to her shaping the play because she watched actors perform what she wrote.
“With having actual people doing (the play) and moving around, I could see what was interesting and not interesting for the audience,” she said.
One of the themes that Christiansen said she maintained in the adaptation was how independent the March sisters are from society.
“The women in the play strengthen each other,” Nelson said. They are each other’s main emotional support, she said.
Christiansen is working on completing the second part of “Little Women.” She said next year’s theater season will determine if it gets staged or not.
“Little Women” runs through Nov. 22. It will be performed each evening at 7:30. Tickets are $7 for students, faculty and staff and $9 for the public. They may be purchased at the Fine Arts Ticket Office or by calling 378-4322.