Lansing Community College’s theater department is playing the comedy “The Government Inspector,” a play that takes place in 19th century Russia. The first two shows happened on Friday, Nov. 3, and Saturday, Nov. 4, at the Dart Auditorium at 8:00 p.m.. The next showing is Friday, Nov. 10 at 8:00 p.m. Other showings are Saturday, Nov. 11 at 8:00 p.m. and Sunday, Nov. 12 at 2:00 p.m.. All showings are at the Dart Auditorium.
Director Mary Matzke has been with LCC since 1988. This play marks the 15th production she has directed with the program.
“It takes place in Russia in 1836, in a small, rural, middle of nowhere Russian village. They think a government inspector is in their area to check everyone out,” Matzke said, “The whole town is completely corrupt, and so they try their best to bribe the inspector and all kinds of things ensue after that. It’s a farce, which means it’s a big, broad comedy.”
“I am playing Ivan Hlestekov. He is who this town thinks is the government inspector,” said Connor Kelly, a theater student at LCC. “He is broke, a drinker, a gambler and a lover. He enjoys life and women, he loves women. He is very vain and believes the world revolves around him. He’s an idiot because of his own vanity.”
Matzke said it was no accident a play highlighting political corruption was chosen for production.
“The country is really divided right now. This happens to be a play about Russia and political corruption,” said Matzke. “The difference being that no matter what side of the division you are on, one thing we all share is humor, and that’s why I decided to do this.”
Kelly said Michigan is probably one of the most divided states in the country.
“Laughter unites us, Republican or Democrat. We’re all angry. Looking at the world of political corruption together reminds us we’re not that different,” Kelly said.
“Small town people get bored and gossip gets around so quickly,” said LCC music major Nicole May. She plays the mayor’s wife, Anna in the production.“When you fuel into that, you bring people into power that you sometimes can’t control.”
Tickets for “The Government Inspector” are $15 for the general public and the price for seniors and LCC staff is $10. LCC students pay $5.
“It’s hysterically funny, it’s a great set, it has fantastic actors,” said Matzke. “It’s a very funny show.”