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Vampire fever

Theater: ‘Dracula’ will take the stage in Valencia High School fundraiser

Posted: August 7, 2010 6:29 p.m.
Updated: August 8, 2010 4:55 a.m.

Before Edward Cullen fell for Bella Swan and Robert Pattinson became a teen heartthrob with a  thirst for blood, a more ghastly character dominated vampire literature. In 1897, author Bram Stoker introduced Count Dracula to the world.

The novel’s influence on the popularity of vampires elicited several theatrical, film and television interpretations throughout the past two centuries. But many of those adaptations, if not all, don’t unveil the vampire’s true colors as revealed by Stoker’s original novel, said Santa Clarita Valley director Eric Clarke.

“I think people see Dracula as a sexy, suave guy, but he’s not,” Clarke said. “He’s an evil monster. It’s sort of anti-‘Twilight.’”

Clarke will present his stage adaptation of “Dracula” at Valencia High School at the end of October as a fundraiser for the school’s drama department. The play will run the week of Halloween, from Oct. 26 through the 29. Clarke is currently trying to put together a cast of a dozen adult actors along with a support crew of techies and anyone else willing to help out, he said.
The presentation comes at a time when “Twilight” fever is at its peak following the recent launch of “New Moon.” But Clarke hopes to spark an interest in the original story of Dracula.

“The book’s been around a long time, but not many people know the original version,” he said. “If (viewers) go to the bookstore and buy all the gothic literature books, then we’ve done our job.”

Anyone who is interested in helping Clarke with the production of “Dracula” can call him at (661) 728-6119.


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