WMU News

Arcadia challenges and rewards audiences

Nov. 8, 2001

KALAMAZOO -- WMU University Theatre presents "Arcadia," a mystery about life past and present, which engages audiences with its motifs of sex, literature, mathematics, adultery, death, loneliness and genius.

Arcadia runs Thursday, Nov. 8, through Saturday, Nov. 10, and Thursday, Nov. 15 through Saturday, Nov. 17 at 8 p.m. in the Laura V. Shaw Theatre. There will also be a Sunday, Nov. 11 matinee at 2 p.m.

Tickets are $16 for adults, $12 for seniors and WMU faculty and staff, and $7 for all students. Tickets are available through the University Theatre ticket office, located in the atrium of the Gilmore Theatre Complex. For tickets call 616 387-6222. The ticket office is open Monday through Friday from noon to 5 p.m. and two hours prior to performances.

An opening night reception on Thursday, Nov. 8, will be sponsored by Bacchus Wines and Spirits. On Thursday, Nov. 15, there will be a sign-interpreted performance for the hearing impaired followed by a post show discussion with the cast and production team.

On Sunday, Nov. 11, former WMU president Dr. Diether Haenicke and Dr. John Fink, chair of the Department of Mathematics at Kalamazoo College, will be featured in a special post-show discussion, "In Arcadia: Waiting For Lord Byron."

Written by Tom Stoppard, Arcadia is directed by Karla Koskinen, WMU associate professor of theatre.

Koskinen says, "The spine of this play is to discover the mysteries of life through human need and desire."

Koskinen makes it clear that this is not a play that the audience can just sit back and watch. This is a
play in which the audience must actively participate.

"The audience needs to be thinking and participating," says Koskinen, "If they don't, they will miss the beauty and intrigue the play has to offer."

Arcadia is not only a play that challenges its audience, but also to the cast and production crew involved. The play is set in two different time periods, the 1800s and the present, which offered a huge challenge for the design team. The main challenge for the actors was British dialect training.

This production will feature seniors Dan Adams as Jellaby, Billy Bradley as Gus/Augustus, Katie Foland as Lady Croom, Tiffany Lavoie as Hannah, Joe Paulik as Valentine and Joe Schiltz as Chater. The rest of the emsemble includes Matin Kettling, Jarek Khan, Brian Ogden, Mickey Solis, Kristen Totten and Alyssa Wilmoth.

The talented design team of students includes Evan Lewis as scenic designer, Brendan Bernacki as assistant lighting designer, Chelsea Osinski as assistant costume designer, Corey Hallwachs as properties artist and Michael Metzdorf as sound designer. Special guest artist, Sean Murphy, a 1993 WMU graduate, will assume the role of lighting designer.

Media contact: Shauna Thieman, 616 387-6222, shauna.thieman@wmich.edu

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