“Inherit the Wind” livens up the stage

Courtesy of Betsy Morgan

Courtesy of Betsy Morgan

The fall play “Inherit the Wind” is a fictional account of the legendary Scopes Trial that defined the war between creationism vs. evolution. After Bertram Kates, a high school biology teacher, is arrested for breaking a town law about the teaching of evolution, two famous lawyers clash in one of the most famous trials of the Twentieth century.

By far the most impressive part of the play, was the great acting. I could sincerely understand the characterization of the two clashing lawyers just by their facial expressions. The story succeeded, in spite of a not-so-good first impression after the preview, in winning me over. The set was pretty but simple, and the costumes fitted the era well.

The characters were well-developed, and the arguments between the characters were realistic. Henry Drummond, defending the teachings of evolution, was a logical, witty sort of a guy who bashed nothing but ignorance. His opponent, Mathew Harrison Brady, sincerely believed in every word of the Bible, and has come to the town of Hillsboro, to fight for the prosecution and to bring fame into the trial.

A lot of the dialogue was in 1920’s slang; however, I could still understand the story pretty well. Regardless, I worry that most people will simply dismiss the play because of the seemingly boring plot and dialogue. In reality, the best parts of the play were the characters and their lengthy monologues about the role of truth within society.

According to the director, Mrs. Christine Hicks, Drummond and Brady’s clash for whether evolution should be taught in school purposely echoes the fight for intellectual freedom during the 1950’s. If that was the goal of the play, then it succeeded. All the court banter and plot twists are just elements of the question of ‘Is the truth faith or science?’

All in all, “Inherit the Wind” was a fascinating play regarding the pursuit and definition of truth within society.