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Preview: 2015-2016 theater line-up to “enrich and expand”

By Selina Pohl

Theater students rehearsing lines from upcoming play, "The Drowsy Chaperone." (Photo by Selina Pohl)

Theater students rehearsing lines from upcoming play, “The Drowsy Chaperone.” (Photo by Selina Pohl)

The university’s theater department is headed in a new direction this season. Leading the season out with the Troupe, presenting “Potluck Broadway,” and ending the year off with a student-written, led and produced show, “To Be Devised,” this year’s lineup is sure to bring the crowds in.

“This year we are serving to enrich the liberal arts education through theater,” Jay Duffer, associate professor of theatre arts, said. “We have a desire to enrich and expand.”

Combining humor, drama and relatable tales, the shows to be presented this year will draw the audience in and have them on the edge of their seats, Duffer said.

With a variety of new titles heading to the stage, the university’s theater department is offering the audience an opportunity to expand their horizons.

The season begins with the Troupe’s show, “Potluck Broadway.” This free-admission show will be taking the stage for only one day—Oct. 3. The show is an ensemble of students performing new and old show-tunes that the family is sure to enjoy. Three opportunities to see the show will be offered this Homecoming weekend.

Hitting the stage in the beginning of November, “The Drowsy Chaperone” will be a production filled with light adult humor and 1920s flare. When the main character, a Broadway fanatic, finds himself in a downward slope of sadness, he spends his time listening to the record of a 1920s Broadway show. The characters of the show begin to appear in his apartment, transforming his space and his attitude. This parody will poke fun at musical theater in hopes of getting the community laughing.

Duffer, predicts that the upcoming shows will be fun, exciting and engaging. He said he expects the adult humor in the anticipated “Drowsy Chaperone” (Nov. 5-7, 12-14) will be very witty for the student body and community to relate to and enjoy.

The theater department is also bringing back the Christmas show this year, “’Tis the Season: A Christmas Spectacular.” It will hit the stage Dec. 4-5. Brought back by popular demand, this year’s show will be an evening of song, dance and acting, all celebrating the birth of Christ and the joyfulness of the Christmas season.

The spring theater season will start off with a tale of a novelist who returns home to visit her parents while keeping them from a wild secret. The drama unfolds as her extremely Republican parents butt heads with her alcoholic Democratic sister. She struggles with figuring out how to tell her dysfunctional family of the memoir she has written about them. This show, “Other Desert Cities,” is a smartly-written show that contains loads of twisted family drama, secrets and mysteries. It also contains adult content and humor and is not recommended for children.

The senior showcase, late in spring semester, will be a display of the theater students’ art and passions as they take the stage with songs and projects they have devoted their college career to learning more about. This will be a diverse show filled with Broadway music and literature from many different time periods.

To finish the season off, the highly anticipated and student-led production of “To Be Devised” will be hitting the stage. This is show will be completely student-led, produced, devised and ran. The theater department is very excited for this show because it is not only led by the upperclassmen theater majors but will be open to the ideas of all students alike.

 

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