Wrinkle in Time image

A Wrinkle in Time

  • April 16 - November 1, 2014
  • Angus Bowmer Theatre
  • Adapted by Tracy Young | From the book by Madeleine L'Engle
  • World Premiere

Calendar & Availability

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Overview
Artists
Video
Run Time: About two hours, including one intermission

Across the universe

Meg Murry is the quintessential square peg: a middle-school math whiz with glasses and a short temper. But when she and her strangely gifted little brother set off to find their missing father, they’re catapulted across time and space to a world where being different isn’t just an annoyance—it can cost you your life. Even with the help of curious otherworldly beings, Meg will have to conjure every power she can find, and then some, to put her family back together. OSF presents a new adaptation of this mind-expanding science fiction story that’s still a favorite with the young and young at heart.

more information +

The Story

One stormy night, Meg Murry can’t sleep after yet another bad day at school. She ends up downstairs having a late-night snack with her mother, a scientist, and Charles Wallace, her genius five-year-old brother. They are joined, unexpectedly, by Mrs. Whatsit—a mysterious old woman, dressed in layers of rags, who has started living in the haunted house in the woods near the Murrys.

Mrs. Whatsit only stays for a short while, but she startles Mrs. Murry by telling her that there are such things as tesseracts, or wrinkles in time and space that one can travel through. Meg’s father, Mr. Murry, a brilliant physicist who has been missing for over a year, had been studying that very idea before his disappearance.

The following day, Charles Wallace and Meg visit Mrs. Whatsit in the woods, along with Meg’s schoolmate Calvin. The three are introduced to Mrs. Who, who tells them that she, Mrs. Whatsit and their friend Mrs. Which—who are indeed magical, shape-shifting beings who just appear to be old women—will help Meg find and rescue her father. To do so, they will have to tesser—travel rapidly across wrinkles in space—to combat the evil Black Thing that is threatening the whole universe.

To get Mr. Murry back, they must travel to the planet Camazotz, which has already succumbed to the Black Thing’s brainwashing, making everyone think and act the same. For their rescue mission to be a success, Meg, Charles Wallace and Calvin must all come to grips with their unique strengths and weaknesses—and discover the power of the strong bond they share.


e-Luminations

What’s a Tesseract?

Near the beginning of A Wrinkle in Time, Mrs. Murry is shocked when Mrs. Whatsit—who has never met Mrs. Murry or her missing physicist husband—tells her that there are such things as tesseracts, the very thing Mr. Murry had been trying to prove before his disappearance.

But what is a tesseract? Science and fiction have somewhat different definitions. Real-life physicists and mathematicians describe a tesseract as a four-dimensional analog of a cube. It’s also sometimes called a hypercube or a cubic prism. British mathematician and science fiction writer Charles Howard Hinton created the term for his 1888 book A New Era of Thought. The word derives from the Greek for “four rays.”

In A Wrinkle in Time, “tesseract” is used to mean something slightly different—a wrinkle in time or space, belonging to a fifth dimension. To “tesser” is to travel along a tesseract, to move almost instantaneously across otherwise insurmountable distances, like from planet to planet, as the children and three Mrs. Ws do in the story. This allows them to move faster than the speed of light, which Mrs. Whatsit calls “the impractical, long way around.”

Mrs. Who demonstrates the concept to the children using the example of an ant crawling across her skirt. If the ant tried to walk from one side of the skirt to the other normally, it would take quite a long time, but if that ant can simply walk across the fold in the skirt, he can get to the same end point much more quickly.

L’Engle isn’t the only writer to be inspired by tesseracts. The 1941 short story, “And He Built a Crooked House,” by science fiction writer Robert Heinlein describes an architect’s attempt to build a house in the shape of a tesseract. The concept may also sound familiar to fans of Marvel comic books or the recent movie adaptations—the Cosmic Cube, taken from the fictional planet of Asgard to wreak havoc on Earth, is described as a tesseract and is a key plot point in the 2012 film The Avengers.

An edited version reprinted from OSF’s 2014 Illuminations, a 64-page guide to the season’s plays. For more information, or to buy the full Illuminations, click here. Members at the Patron level and above and teachers who bring a school groups to OSF receive a free copy of Illuminations.

Creative Team

Director
Tracy Young
Scenic Designer
Christopher Acebo
Costume Designer
Alex Jaeger
Lighting Designer
Rick Martin
Composer/Sound Designer
Paul James Prendergast
Video/Projections Designer
Shawn Sagady
Puppet Designer
Lynn Jeffries
Movement Director
Kjerstine Rose Anderson*
Associate Movement Director
Sarah Lozoff
Dramaturg
Lue Morgan Douthit
Voice and Text Director
David Carey
Fight Director
U. Jonathan Toppo*

Cast

Meg Murry
Alejandra Escalante*
Charles Wallace Murry/Ens.
Sara Bruner*
Calvin O'Keefe
Joe Wegner
Mr. Murry/Ens.
Dan Donohue*
Mrs Murry/Ens.
Kate Hurster*
Mrs. Who/Ens.
Michele Mais*
Mrs. Whatsit/Ens.
Judith-Marie Bergan*
Dennys/Ens.
Mark Bedard*
Sandy/Ens.
Jeremy Thompson
Fortinbras/Ens.
U. Jonathan Toppo*
Ensemble
Kate Mulligan*
Aunt Beast/Ens.
Daniel T. Parker*
Ensemble
Jada Rae Perry
* Member of Actors' Equity Association (AEA)
**AEA Professional Theatre Intern
  • scenic art image

    Snapshot: Creating a Starscape

    Scenic Artist Thayne Abraham talks about the process for creating the starry deck.

  • props image

    Snapshot: The Ventriloquist's Doll

    Props artisan V. Annette Julien shares secrets about the doll.

  • Tracy Young image

    Adapting the book

    Tracy Young discusses her hopes for the adaptation of this beloved science fiction book.

  • Tracy Young image

    The Ensemble

    In this part of the interview, the director talks about how she plans to work with the ensemble to create the world.