Theatre students find inner volleyball player


    Theater students will get their game on in a production of “Volleygirls”, a drama about a girls’ high school volleyball team.

    The play features students Kelsey Milbourn, Gabe Whitehurst, Annie Burton, and Shelby Ringdahl. Lyndsie Gregorie, senior physical education major and captain of TCU club volleyball, assisted with choreography for the play.

    Performing in plays such as “Volleygirls” provides valuable experience, sophomore theater major Shelby Ringdahl said. The performances teach  theater students professionalism and give them experience in diverse roles, she said. It will prepare them for what it is like outside of the classroom, she said.

    Although it is great experience, balancing classes and rehearsals makes for a busy schedule, Ringdahl said. Over the past two weeks the cast has had two five-and-a-half hour rehearsals, she said.

    However, she said the directors are helpful with working around their schedules.

    “They are really great about respecting our time and understanding that we are students also,” she said.

    Gabe Whitehurst, junior theater major, also said theater students deal with a lot of extracurricular hours.

    “Classes are definitely different. I’m not sitting at home doing math homework, I’m sitting at home memorizing monologues and a scene,” he said. “It’s very busy, just in a different way.”

    In “Volleygirls,” Whitehurst will play the volleyball coach, while Ringdahl will play Katie, a volleyball player who transferred from another school.

    Preparing for “Volleygirls” has been a unique experience because some of the actresses had never played volleyball before, Ringdahl said. However, she said the cast has been doing everything they can to prepare.

    The actors have had practices at the University Recreation Center and went to the TCU vs.Baylor volleyball game to watch how the teams play, Ringdahl said.

    “It’s not just sitting there reading scripts. We were in the gym working out,” Ringdahl said.

    Whitehurst also said the sports aspect of the play was challenging. He said it is the hardest preparation for a play he has ever experienced, not because of the characters but because of the choreography of the games.

    Annie Burton, senior theater major, said this play has been more complicated than they expected.

    “It is so intricate in the way the volleyball must be done through mime,” she said. “The audience has to be able to see the ball wherever it goes.”

    Dr. T. J. Walsh, assistant professor, will direct “Volleygirls.”

    “Volleygirls” is one of four shows planned by the Department of Theatre this fall.

    For tickets, call the Theatre TCU Box Office.

    What: TCU’s production of ‘Volleygirls’
    Where: Hays Theatre
    When: September 27-30 at 7:30 p.m. and October 2 at 2:30 and 7:30 p.m.