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TWU Theatre Presents Six Characters in Search of an Author

TWU Theatre Presents Six Characters in Search of an Author

4/5/02


DENTON — Reality and illusion collide as the Texas Woman's University Theatre Department presents Luigi Pirandello's Six Characters in Search of an Author.

Performances are at 8 p.m. Wednesday, April 17 through Saturday, April 20, and at 2 p.m. Sunday, April 21. All performances will take place in the Redbud Theatre, located on Bell Avenue on TWU's Denton campus. Tickets are $10 for general admission and $5 for students, TWU faculty and staff, senior citizens and children. To make reservations, call the TWU Theatre Box Office at (940) 898-2020.

Some audience members will be invited to sit onstage during the production, giving them a close-up view of the drama unfolding and adding to the overall effect of the play, said Marketa Fantova, assistant professor in TWU's Department of Performing Arts and director of the production.

The play begins as a father and his family interrupt a theatrical company's rehearsal preparation. The six strangers explain that they are characters from an unfinished play and are looking for an author to finish their story. As the characters recall their past, the tale is one of bitterness and accusation, with each character having his or her own view of events. The story ends in tragedy — or does it? Even the theater company's stage manager is unsure what is real and what is illusion.

Fantova will direct the production from a design standpoint, a style popular in her native central Europe.

“The approach is more compact, with more of an emphasis on teamwork,” she said. Instead of having one student in charge of scenery and another in charge of costumes, she said, students will discuss ideas as a group.

“I'm letting them explore different possibilities and be as creative as possible,” Fantova said.

Fantova describes Six Characters in Search of an Author as “a play within a play within a play,” with fictional characters springing to life and interacting with “real”actors. TWU's use of unusual costumes will help the audience tell the characters apart, Fantova said.

Pirandello's plays are often seen as the forerunners for theatre of the absurd, and TWU's production stays true to that absurdness with abstract, colorful makeup and costumes on a minimalistic set. All the costumes are made out of papier mache, which provides an additional outlet for expression of the characters as well as a way to help the audience distinguish between the real and fictional characters, Fantova said.

Ruth Stephenson (McKinney) takes on the role of stage manager both onstage and as part of the crew. Other cast members include Jaymes Gregory (Haltom City) as the director; Catherine Brassfield (Fort Worth), as Fifi; Jerry Dawson (Arlington) as Jerry; Brendan Dennehy (Greenville) as the father; Scott Fryer (Denton) as Lawrence; Cory Glanton (Southlake) as the son; Larry Hernandez (El Paso) as the boy; Jamica Hooks (Denton) as the director's wife; Amanda Kelts (Denton) as the stepdaughter; Sashenka Lopez (Denton) as the mother; Rebecca Price (Denton) as Madame Pace and Trinity; Camille Thompson (North Richland Hills) as the little girl; Marta Thompson (Denton) as Mary Jane; Jamie Tompkins (Flower Mound) as Colinda; Kristin Weber (Bartonville) as Clarice; and Thomas Floyd (Denison) as Frances.

Brassfield, Dawson and Gregory pull double duty as members of the design team, which also includes Maryann Durmer (Corinth), and Cris Galvan (McAllen). Other members of the crew are Natalie Bransford (Hurst), wardrobe; and Dr. Mary Lou Hoyle, professor in the TWU Department of Performing Arts, as literary adviser.

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For Further Information Contact:

Karen Treat
Senior Copywriter
Tel: (940) 898-3456
e-mail: ktreat@twu.edu