As students flood back into dorms and classes for the fall and spring semesters, JSU’s Drama Department readies itself for a season of exciting—and varied—productions.
In September, the Drama Department will hold its first-ever 10-Minute Play Festival, a showcase of one-person scripts and short films by students in the Leon Cole Auditorium.
Randy Blades, acting head of JSU Drama, says that he decided to hold the festival at Leon Cole “in the hope that more students will come and see what the Drama Department is doing.”
With two other plays “that couldn’t be more different” planned for this semester, JSU Drama is doing all it can to keep the campus entertained.
“This year we have a mix-up of styles,” he continues.
“The Curious Savage,” which will be performed October 17th through the 20th, is “very kind and lighthearted, and it has a great message at the end,” Blades says. “It’s a classic American comedy.”
The play pits a wealthy widower against her scheming stepchildren, who send her to an insane asylum. While there, she befriends her fellow inmates, who help her thwart her stepchildren’s plan to siphon away her finances.
According to Blades, new faculty member Michael Boynton will make his directing debut with “The Curious Savage,” and a guest designer has been invited from Atlanta to create the scenery for the production.
He says that the play is full of “very likable characters,” and has a “few more laughs” than the other production planned for this semester, “Antigone.”
Opening November 14th and running through the 17th, “Antigone” is an adaptation of a classic Greek tragedy. Written by Jean Anouilh, the play debuted in Nazi-controlled Paris in 1944. “There are overtones of resistance to regimes and meeting your fate,” explains Blades.
JSU Drama’s approach for “Antigone” will be completely different than in “The Curious Savage”—expect it to be “more sterile and cold,” says Blades.
A guest designer—and former JSU student—will also assist the Drama Department on the lighting for “Antigone.”
“Both of our shows this year will be really entertaining,” says Blades. “Whether they laugh at the comedy of ‘The Curious Savage’ or enjoy the drama of ‘Antigone,’ students will appreciate what we’ve done.”
Auditions for this upcoming season of plays closed Monday, August 26, but auditions for the 10-minute play festival are open until Friday.
JSU Drama has scheduled two productions for next semester—the musical “Kiss Me, Kate,” and the for-mature-audiences-only “Fool for Love.” Check out The Chanticleer’s first issue of the spring semester for a preview of both.