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Mudlark Theater finishes their spring season with “Candide,” a new adaptation of Voltaire’s outrageous satire that tells the story of the naïve optimist, Candide, and the absurd hardships that challenge his innocent outlook on life.

After being banished from the kingdom of Westphalia, Candide and his companions begin a journey through the world encountering wealth, wisdom and nearly unending woe as Candide desperately tries to reunite with his love, Cunégonde. Audiences will find out whether everything that happens is really for the best and whether this is the best of all possible worlds.

Those familiar with the original novella by Voltaire might be surprised that a youth theater is producing an adaption of Candide. For creators John Taflan and Krista D’Agostino, however, Voltaire’s tale is
essentially about the youth experience.

“It’s the story of a young person discovering that the world is far more complicated than they could have imagined it” said Mr. Taflan. “Candide just gets attacked by a deluge of insanity. We thought it would be really interesting to see what it would be like if it were an actual young person encountering all of these things.”

Voltaire is known for his hilarious satirical commentary, which resonated strongly with the show directors as well as the cast, which is predominately made up of middle schoolers. 

“Young people today have more access to information about the injustices of the world than maybe at any other point in our history” said Mr. Taflan. “It’s been really exciting to see them engage in the satirical aspects of the material, and to be able to understand the moving, and frankly political, aspects of what we’re putting into the play.”

The cast includes youth actors
Andrew Skinner and Griffin Kearns,
who will be playing Candide on alternat-ing evenings, as well as Andrew Feingold-Fisher, Ben Henderson, Charlie Settimi, Chaz Thompson, Darrion Coleman,
Estevan Torres, Griffin Kearns, Isa Chiwah, John Bezaitis, Josephine Layden, Katie Dunn, Lauren Guevara, Leah Johnson, Lila Selch, Louis Hodges, Luc Van Haelewyn, Maddy Pollard, Maya Jaffe, Milo Slevin, Nat Sotnick, Nate Fishman, Oona O’Brien, Sam Consiglio and Theo Kayaian. Adult actors include Amelia Bethel, Brian Tochterman Jr.,
Jeremiah Davis and Moira Begale. 

Created and directed by Mr. Taflan and Mudlark’s Artistic Producer Ms. D’Agostino, and written by Mr. Taflan, the show runs through May 24 at the Noyes Theater in the Noyes Cultural Arts Center, 927 Noyes St.

Performances are at 7 p.m. May 17, 18, 22, 23, 24 and 3 p.m. on May 19. Tickets are available at