Rice University’s Student Newspaper — Since 1916

Tuesday, May 21, 2024 — Houston, TX

‘Yukon Breakfast’ offers a humane lens to ‘Frankenstein’

breakfast-yukon-yi-luo
Yi Luo/Thresher

By Moses Glickman     11/16/18 4:26pm

Frankenstein’s monster stumbles into a cabin in the remote Alaskan woods. The cabin’s occupant, an old woman who lives alone, invites him in for a meal. So begins the action of Martel College junior Matt Pittard’s “Yukon Breakfast,” directed by Hanszen College senior Nonie Hilliard. The play, produced by, directed by and starring Rice students, gained a full production after winning the Rice Players’ first-ever Playwriting Competition. (The Rice Players gave stage readings of two runner-ups, Kevin Mullin’s “Have You Seen My Cactus?” and Elsa Schieffelin’s “The History of Flight,” during the Rice Playfest from Nov. 9 to 10.) 

When asked what drew her to “Yukon Breakfast,” Sid Richardson College senior Abby Sledge laughed. 

“At this point, it’s more of a question of, what would prevent me?” Sledge said.



She voiced her excitement about giving a “more optimistic lens” to the Frankenstein story and showing an environment in which Frankenstein’s monster could find a measure of acceptance. 

“The thing about Frankenstein is, everyone in it is kind of bad,” Sledge said. ”What if the minor characters were cool about [his flaws]?”

Sledge is especially excited about her character Agatha, the old woman who invites Frankenstein's monster inside. 

“Agatha never sees him as a monster,” Sledge said. “Agatha’s really the only character who never sees Percy as a monster — eventually, we call [the monster] Percy.”

The acceptance of Percy proved to be a recurring fascination among the people who made “Yukon Breakfast” happen. Producer Sierra Beckstrom spoke of providing the Frankenstein story with themes of family, community and caring. 

“It’s really a beautiful sentiment,” Beckstrom, a McMurtry College junior, said.

According to Beckstrom, it’s her first time producing a play; in fact, many of those integral to the production of “Yukon Breakfast” are in their roles for the first time. All the same, Beckstrom was nothing but optimistic about how the play had evolved. 

“We fell behind a bit,” she said. “But we came back.”

Writer Matt Pittard said that seeing his play go into production has had unexpected results. 

"It's one thing to write for yourself," Pittard said. "A play is a whole other step. It's out of my hands, outside of my control. I've been to rehearsals. It's going to be great."

A fun fact about “Yukon Breakfast”? Pittard has never been to Alaska.

“Yukon Breakfast” is playing at 8 p.m. in Hamman Hall between Nov. 15 and 17. 



More from The Rice Thresher

A&E 4/21/24 11:51pm
Jeremy Zucker is no longer a ‘sad-boy troubadour’

Jeremy Zucker’s arms, like most of his body, host a scrapbook of tattoos — a faded clementine peel, his childhood pets (Rusty and Susie), a Pinterest doodle of Sonic the Hedgehog with a bouquet of flowers. His middle finger is etched with a single tooth, hanging off a thin branch wrapping around the rest of his hand.

A&E 4/17/24 12:00am
Super Smash Bros. ultimate tournament sees smashing success

The Super Smash Bros. Club held their second annual ultimate tournament Friday, April 12. Club president Jashun Paluru said all Smash players were welcome, regardless of ability, experience or involvement in the club. The event was held in collaboration with Owls After Dark, a late-night activity series headed by the Rice Student Center, at the Rice Memorial Center’s Grand Hall.

A&E 4/16/24 11:07pm
Tribute band ‘Suede Hedgehog’ talks inspirations, legacies

Last Thursday, the halls of the RMC were graced with smooth melodies and funky grooves courtesy of “Suede Hedgehog,” Rice’s very own tribute band to “Silk Sonic,” a musical duo made up of Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak. Although the tiny desk concert only lasted about 20 minutes the atmosphere was electric, and Coffeehouse — their venue — was packed with listeners.


Comments

Please note All comments are eligible for publication by The Rice Thresher.