TCU Theatre’s students and staff predict this season’s shows will be even more successful than last year’s. A wide variety of genres, a brand new play, and work with professional actors are sure to bring in even more showgoers.
The theatre department plans to have four shows this fall, starting in September and continuing throughout November.
The first show of the season, “The Fantasticks,” is from TCU’s Kaleidoscope series, which consists of everything from student-written plays to musicals. The show is a musical about a forbidden couple’s joys and trials.
This year the play will be co-produced with Fort Worth’s Circle Theatre, which features six plays annually from playwrights across the nation.
Dr. Harry Parker, chair of TCU’s theatre department, said TCU’s involvement in the show is a great learning experience for students.
“Three of our students are working with professional actors in this show,” Parker said. “It’s really a great benefit for them to learn.”
TCU students can see any performance of “The Fantasticks” for only $10, thanks to Circle Theatre’s student discount, Parker said. The show will run for five weeks, starting Sept. 22.
Parker also expressed excitement for this semester’s first campus show. The show, titled “Volleygirls,” is a drama about a girls’ high school volleyball team.
“I know that it will be a surprise that there is some drama that goes on,” Parker joked, “but it is both comical and serious. The players, coaches and parents all ring very true to that experience.”
Senior theatre major Scott Moffitt, a cast member in “Volleygirls,” spoke about his methods of training for the show.
“I’m playing a Russian referee in the first show, so I have to work on my accent,” Moffitt said. “Also, I have to go to some volleyball games and learn about what the refs do and how they move.”
Students expect for this season’s shows to sell out quickly, just like the previous year’s shows, senior theatre major Andrew McGlothen said.
“It’s going to be an immense crowd pleaser,” McGlothen said of “Volleygirls.” “The department is trying to target the TCU audience so I think that one will sell very well.”
McGlothen will also be in “Iron Kisses,” a play coming in October that features only two actors who play both the roles of a married couple and of siblings.
“Volleygirls” opens on Sept. 27 at Hays Theatre, which will be one of the first theatres to produce the show. To guarantee a seat at the show, Parker suggested TCU students buy their tickets online on the first or second day of production.
“It’s not uncommon for us, when we’re only doing six or seven performances, to sell out because our theater is so small,” Parker said.
Student actors have already put in countless hours to ensure the show runs smoothly, Parker said. The actors practice three to four hours a day, six days a week.
“The production and set-design departments also work very hard to make sure the play goes well,” Parker said.
Junior theatre major Alisan Heath encouraged students to come out and see the shows.
“This season is going to be really good,” Heath said, “We’re always excited about it, talking about it, so definitely come out to see them.”
Heath will be in “The Beaux’ Stratagem” in November, a play written in 18th century England about two troublemaking young men.
“Our favorite audience is TCU students,” Parker said. “We hope they will come and participate in what we have to offer.”