Get a Room!
What do a mysterious killer, a dead body, a crossword puzzle and your mom’s butt all have in common?
They’re all subjects in Get a Room! The Room Plays 1-4, performing 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 22 in the Fogelson Library.
The Performing Arts Department kicks off its spring semester with this off-the-wall selection of student-directed, 10-minute plays, to be performed in the Fogelson Library lobby as the Greer Garson Theater undergoes necessary tech upgrades throughout the semester.
An eclectic group of shorts, each delivers heart, humor and suspense to the audience.
An Evening Crossword, written by Kim Megna and directed with care by senior Chloe Torblaa, tackles the delicate subject matter of campus safety when three young women suspect a friend is going to a party where the hosts have less-than-honorable intentions. The show delivers a powerful emotional punch as the characters undergoes nail-biting “will they, won’t they” internal struggles of what to do with the tense situation.
Torblaa says that she selected the play as a way to give her all-female cast, consisting of Tristine Henderson, Courtney Walsh, Britain Gillispie and Lauren Trujillo – who all give great performances – a chance to showcase their under-appreciated talents to the department.
“I’m really interested in working on what I call ‘the secret war on women’ which is when women are raised to see each other as competition, and I think that’s not right,” adds Torblaa.
Torblaa and her cast share a tight bond that has developed during the short rehearsal period, taking time out of rehearsals to join in energy circles and exercises for focusing and calming.
“It’s been amazing working with these girls,” Torblaa says.
The Devil is in the Details is an intense little show by Jill Elaine Hughes, directed with a sure hand by Rachel Shuford and lively performed by freshmen Issac Snyder, Adam Troyer and Sarah Sanders. When a hit man and his girlfriend are left waiting in a basement with a body they just killed, all sorts of unexpected discoveries come to light.
“I love things that make you think,” says Shuford on why she selected the play. “Also, because I knew the script would be such a challenge for me, I wanted to see how far I could go with it and explore suspense storytelling in theatre.”
Similarly to Torblaa, Shuford jokes around and has fun with her cast during rehearsal, staying focused but still enjoying the process.
Playwright Alan Ball delivers a zinger with Your Mom’s Butt, directed by Matt McMillan and performed by Joey Beth Gilbert and Montserrat Cuellar Mestas. A shoe-obsessed client (Gilbert) talks with her therapist (Mestas) about a strange dream concerning her mother. Wit and drama collide in this provocatively named short.
Bedtime, skillfully directed by Julia Rocke and written by Steve Yockey, draws audiences into the friendship of Violet (Sarah Spickard) and Julie (Kinsey Sarian), making them watch with baited breath as that friendship is put to the test by Bag Man (Austin Creswell.) Already strong performances from both Rocke as director and all the actors are sure to have only improved and intensified since Jackalope wrote about the show last week.
Each play delivers a solid and enjoyable performance thanks to their dedicated cast, crew and director, balancing plot, pacing and character development with ease.
Get a Room! The Room Plays 1-4 have only two showings, so don’t miss out. Catch these fun shows from the talented students of the Performing Arts Department this Sunday at 2 p.m. and then again at 4 p.m. Both performances are free.