Comical Adaption of “Pride and Prejudice” to be performed at Kennesaw State University

KENNESAW, Ga. | Mar 5, 2024

Jane Austen’s classic novel is delightfully and hilariously reimagined for a new era

Kennesaw State University’s Department of Theatre and Performance Studies (TPS) will present “Pride and Prejudice” in the Stillwell Theater March 28 through April 7. This performance of literature’s greatest tale of latent love has never felt so theatrical—or so full of life—than it does in this effervescent adaptation. 

Amanda Maame Blankson
Amanda Maame Blankson plays the role of Mrs. Bennett.

Based on the novel by Jane Austen, this adaptation by Kate Hamil promises that it’s “not your grandmother’s Austen!” Director and TPS Professor Marlon A. Burnley describes the adaptation as written for today—even a bit wacky and kooky—and different from Austen’s version. In fact, he explains, “Jane Austen might clutch her pearls at what some of the characters say.” The characters are “not what we’re used to, but don’t worry, Mrs. Bennett is still crazy,” he adds. 

Mrs. Bennett may still be crazy, but patrons will enjoy watching her antics. Audience members “are in for a ride,” says student Amanda Maame Blankson, a senior in TPS who plays Mrs. Bennett. Her favorite part of the role is that she gets to “play with movement and tone, and, surprise, surprise, I get to dance!” Anytime there is a ballroom scene, she immediately does “a really fun chant that I believe is going to get the audience hyped all the way up!”

Kristian Martinez
Kristian Martinez plays the role of Mr. Bennett.
But it’s not just laughs that audiences will take away: there may also be an underlying message or two. TPS senior Kristian Martinez, who plays Mr. Bennett, explains that one reminder from the play is “always standing up for what you believe. Throughout the show, you will see that, even though each character is different, and they all have different beliefs, they can still coexist and come together.” 

Burnley hopes to break audience expectations right from the start. “The throughline of the play is that you shouldn’t have expectations, as they are meant to be broken. Audiences may walk in expecting something [familiar], and they will be surprised, and then they can continue to look for surprises in the work.” 

The play also comments on gender and identity. Hamil notes that people are welcome to play opposite genders—it was written that way—and the actors should play the characters as themselves. Burnley explains that Hamil was “making commentary in the moment” and was very specific that no one should deepen or raise their voice, but rather play the character as themselves. Burnley is particularly interested in how the diverse cast members fit themselves in the Austen world, as this play is usually not represented in that way. Austen may not have minded, as she was, after all, writing and commenting on the time in which she lived.

“No matter who you are, or where you’re from, we are all the same; we are people,” offers Martinez. The play “showcases being true to who you are, and [if you do that,] then everything true will come back to whom you are!” 

“Our cast is a troupe of actors who wants to take classical works and show them in their own way. Working with these students has brought so much joy and energy to the process,” explains Burnley.

Tickets for “Pride and Prejudice” are available online or by calling 470-578-6650. To learn more about the Department of Theatre and Performance Studies, please visit


Costume sketches from Assistant Professor of Costume Design Ricky Greenwell and student Emily Sinatra; Scenic rendering from Trevor Carrier. 

--Kathie Beckett

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