2018 Theatre Arts Spring Preview

Sarae Ticeahkie
Student Life Editor

Cameron University’s Theatre Arts department will celebrate Festival X’s American Identities in the 21st Century, with two theatrical productions this spring semester.

Letters From Cuba And Manual for a Desperate Crossing
From Feb. 22-25, Cameron’s Theatre Arts department will present their first production, which consists of two short plays: “Letters from Cuba” and “Manual for a Desperate Crossing.”

Both plays written by Maria Irene Fornes, take a detailed look at the immigrant experience.

Fornes’ writing focuses on poetry and emotions, as her work connects to, and is inspired by, her Cuban background.

Associate Professor of Art, Music and Theatre Deidre Onishi will be directing the two one-act plays.

Onishi said the theme of Festival X gave her the opportunity to direct a Fornes play.

“I’ve always wanted to do her work,” she said. “It is very beautiful, but difficult, because it is poetry and not straight dialogue.”

The first short play is “Letters from Cuba,” which is a sincere and romantic story that takes you back and forth between a New York City loft and a lonely rooftop in Cuba.

The play emphasizes on musings of family, friends and platonic love. It links together Fran, a young dancer, and her brother Luis, who sees the world through a poet’s eyes.

A love triangle builds as Fran falls in love with one of her friends, and Luis begins to yearn for the company of the friend’s sister.

After a brief interlude, the second play, “Manual for a Desperate Crossing,” will begin. Fornes originally wrote “Manual for a Desperate Crossing” as an opera, but later turned it into a play.

The second act focuses on Cubans trying to cross into the United States on tiny homemade rafts, with their desperation coming from terrible economic situations. The play is based on interviews from some of the thousands of Cubans who set out for Florida.

Legally Blonde
From April 19-22, Cameron Theatre Arts department will present their second major production, “Legally Blonde: The Musical.”

The Musical is based on the novel by Amanda Brown and the Metro-Goldwyn-Meyer motion picture, with music and lyrics by Laurence O’Keefe and Nell Benjamin.

Amanda Brown is an American novelist whose work built the foundation for the film and musical.

Professor and Chair of the Department of Theatre Arts, Scott Richard Klein, will be directing the musical.

Klein said they present a musical every year, and in trying to fit with the theme of Festival X, “Legally Blonde: The Musical” seemed to be the correct choice.

“It [the musical] seems to fit, because of course it’s about Elle fighting herself, empowering herself and taking charge of her life,” he said. “We thought ‘what a neat identity to do,’ and it’s just a fun show.”

The musical tells the story of Elle Woods, a sorority girl who enrolls at Harvard Law School to win back her ex-boyfriend Warner. In the process, Elle discovers her knowledge of the law, and she begins a journey to pursue her dreams.

Elle tackles stereotypes, snobbery and scandal as she defies expectations, all while staying true to herself.

Both theatrical productions are scheduled to be performed on all evenings of their dates, starting at 7:30 p.m. and 2 p.m. on Sundays.

Adult tickets prices are $12 and student tickets are $10. Cameron students receive one free ticket with their student ID.

To purchase tickets, contact the Cameron University Box Office at (580)-581-2478.


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