Righting wrongs with an ounce of optimism

Have you ever thought that someone was being quixotic? Knew someone who fights windmills? What about someone who has a sidekick?

Have you ever thought that someone was being quixotic? Knew someone who fights windmills? What about someone who has a sidekick?

If so, you were thinking of Don Quixote de La Mancha. The novel “Don Quixote de La Mancha” was first published in 1605 and is now considered the first novel. The Nobel Institute lists this comedic saga as the world’s greatest book.

The story centers on a man who believes he is a knight and it is his job to travel the world righting all wrongs. He believes he can bring about change in the world.

Traveling with his companion, Sancho Panza, Quixote has a slightly different viewpoint of the world. He sees it as it ought to be, not as it is.

In 1965, the story went big when a Broadway musical, “Man of La Mancha,” opened to rave reviews. The play won eight Tony awards, including Best Music, Best Director and Best Show. It ran for six years and has had numerous encores on the Broadway stage.

Now, Stage Door Productions brings the show to the Enumclaw High School auditorium.

“Last November, the majority of Americans elected a president based on the idea that one man can make a change,” Stage Door Productions Director Frank Thompson said. “Isn’t it about time we invested in watching a show about how it is possible?”

The show is an ambitious one, taking place in a 16th century prison where the author of the book defends himself with his story of a “mad” knight.

“One of the hardest things to do was to costume a show where there are knights in armor,” Thompson said. “Some costume pieces are hard to come by.” But he maintains the best part of the show is the music.

“The memorable song in the piece is, ‘The Impossible Dream,’” Thompson said. “Don Quixote believes it is everyone’s responsibility to attempt to make life better. I can guarantee that everyone who leaves the theater will believe they can.”

It is a love story, a comedy and a drama.

“We have kept our prices low so everyone can afford to attend,” Thompson said. “We even have a matinee to benefit Plateau Outreach Ministries to help fulfill our part of making life here on the Plateau better.”

With a cast and crew from the area and some from outside our region, the show will be one to remember, he said.

“Man of La Mancha” opens at 7:30 p.m. Thursday and continues with nightly performances Friday, Saturday, April 30, May 1 and May 2. Matinees are also offered at 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday and May 2. Sunday’s matinee is a benefit for Plateau Outreach Ministries.

Advance tickets are $13 for adults, $10 for seniors and $8 for students. Tickets at the door are $15 for adults, $12 for seniors and $10 for students.

Tickets are available at Enumclaw Radio Shack, Enumclaw Chamber of Commerce and the Arts Alive! Gallery, or online at www.stagedoorprod.org.

For information, call 360-825-2212.

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