On Friday, Dec. 9 at 8 p.m., the lights of the QC Theater dimmed till only a single spotlight was shining. It was then that the members of Prenzie Players began telling their interpretation of William Shakespeare’s comedy play “As You Like It.”

The audience was engaged the moment the play began with storyline details, an intense physical altercation, and the words of Shakespeare, with a few modern-day comments, tying it all together. It wasn’t long before the audience was splitting their sides in laughter. There was never a dull moment among these Players.

“As You Like It” follows the intertwining storylines of six main characters surrounding the event of a Duke’s banishment, his daughter (Rosalind) being kept and then banished by her uncle, her falling in love with a man named Orlando, how his brother is sent to kill him by Rosalind’s uncle, and how she, her cousin Celia, and their friend Touchstone flee to the Forest of Arden in search of her father. The interesting detail about them fleeing is that the two cousins change their identities: Celia dresses as a poor woman named Aliena and Rosalind as a young man named Ganymede. This event heavily aids the comedy throughout the play.

Prenzie Players did a magnificent job of bringing this play to life. The lead actress, Liz Ann Terry, brought forth the wit, sass, and confidence of Rosalind in an entertaining and comedic performance. I was immediately entertained by all the characters in the play: Rosalind’s wit, Celia’s guidance, Touchstone’s jokes and mannerisms, melancholic Lord Jacques famous speeches, Orlando’s comedic dedication to win Rosalind over when she is Ganymede, and his brother Oliver aiding the villain in the story while providing an intense scene of conflict where you pray he has turned from his crooked ways.

The motto of Prenzie Players, “Theater is not a passive experience,” certainly was displayed in this play. The characters engaged the audience not just with their performance, but also with having running jokes that involved interacting with the audience. A shepherd named Corinne calls for her sheep David and asks members of the audience if they have seen him. Another way that they engage the audience is by holding a Q&A session with all the cast members after the performance. This is an excellent production and I encourage all to attend this experience.

Productions will be held Thursday, December 15th at 8:00 pm, Friday, December 16th at 8:00 pm and Saturday, December 17th at 8:00 pm at 1730 Wilkes, Davenport. Doors open at 7:00 pm with seating at 7:30 pm. For more information see www.prenzieplayers.com.

Cheyanne Lencioni is a student at Augustana College and has been writing stories for 8 years. She is on the college’s Equestrian Team and Fencing Club as well as a member of Augustana’s Collegia Classica Classics Language group and wants to be a published Author after graduation.