The fall play and comedy, “Farce of Nature,” is now showing in the Goodwin Performing Arts Center at 7:30 p.m., with its final showing on Saturday.
Eddie Powers, professor of theatre and director of the show, said the show has been in the works since late August. After many weeks of work, they became ready for an audience.
After a while, a show starts to level off as far as measurable advancements, the show needs an audience.
-Eddie Powers, Director
The production is meant to make people laugh, and part of putting this kind of show on the stage requires the audience’s participation.
“It’s just going to be fun, fun, fun,” Powers said. “Theatre is for everybody, a good story is a good story … and we’ve got a fun and a good story to tell.”
This show offers a type of comedy called “farce” and consists of many plot complications, physical humor and stereotypes, all aimed at making the audience chuckle. The show is only 90 minutes long with two acts and is described by Powers as a “laugh fest.”
“Theater can only survive if it is seen by an audience,” Powers said. “There is a circle that is created in theater: the actor gives to the audience, and the audience gives to the actor, and that’s when you have theater.”
This upcoming show has two seniors in its cast. Senior journalism major Holly Hendershot, playing Wanelle Wilburn, and senior children and youth ministry major Connor Hoffman, playing Sonny Barbosa, are both in their last fall production at Waynesburg.
“Telling stories on stage has always been a passion of mine,” Hendershot said. “Theater is an activity that I enjoy immensely, and having been involved in every major production at Waynesburg University since the start of my college career, I couldn’t imagine the past few years without it.”
Hoffman has only been involved in theater sparsely, with his participation as stage manager in the 2016 fall play, “Fools,” and the 2019 spring musical, “The Hunchback of Notre Dame.” He also acted in Tre Thomas’ student-produced one-act play, “On this Hill,” last spring. “Farce of Nature” is both Hoffman’s first and last fall play as an actor.
“It’s cliche, but the friendships I made are really tight,” Hoffman said. “When you’re with each other three hours a night for two-and-a-half months, you get close with people.”
Being a former stage manager, Hoffman believes that he has learned how to help make a show run, whilst not being a main actor, and has developed a lot of his skills backstage, watching and tweaking the actors’ performances.
The greatest growth from the actors has been recognized by Powers through the off-stage banter. Relationships build through their time spent in the GPAC, and by the end of rehearsals, the group grew closer and closer. Rehearsal notes were filled with laughter, “chatting away” as if they had “known each other for years,” Powers said.
As the fall play is nearing its final showing, Powers has already been putting thought into the upcoming spring musical for 2020.
“We put a lot of thought into the musical,” Powers said. “[But] we have not selected a title [yet].”
Powers has been meeting with the music faculty, including band instructor Dr. Ronda DePriest and vocal instructor and professor Melanie Catana, to look at possible shows. There are a lot of variables that still need to be taken into consideration, Powers said, but he hopes to announce the title of the spring musical sometime this month before students leave for Thanksgiving break.
“We may pick a show that not many people know, but that doesn’t mean it’s a bad show,” Powers said. “There are thousands and thousands of musicals out there and some wonderful shows that we have never even heard of.”
“Farce of Nature” is a prime example of one of those “less-popular” shows. When the title for the show was officially announced early this fall, most students on campus were generally unfamiliar with it.
As far as our knowledge of plays, they’re even more limited than our knowledge of musicals, and ‘Farce of Nature’ is hysterical.
-Eddie Powers, Director
“Farce of Nature” will be showing on the GPAC stage tonight, Friday and Saturday at 7:30 p.m.