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Tony Award winning play opens in July
Central Wyoming College theater patrons may benefit from a restless director with a desire to stage one of his favorite plays with a small talented cast of CWC theater students and alumni July 24-29.
In the small and intimate space of the Robert A. Peck Arts Center dance studio, CWC presents Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? and director Mike Myers has pronounced: “This is going to be one of the best shows we’ve ever done.”
Woolf isn’t a play Myers could normally schedule during the regular academic year as it only has parts for four actors. Most CWC shows have large casts to allow roles for as many students as possible, and Myers is delighted to direct some of his best protégés. “It’s like dying and going to heaven to have accomplished, experienced and dedicated actors to do this play,” he said.
CWC alumni Amara Fehring, who recently graduated with a theater degree from the University of Montana, and Logan LaCross, who is a senior theater major at UM, join up with recent CWC theater graduate Molly Thornton and Josiah Sifuentes to present the Edward Albee play. It won the Tony Award for best play in 1963 and created a stir for its then controversial sexual themes. It was adapted for film in 1966 and Elizabeth Taylor won her second Academy Award for her portrayal of Martha and Sandy Dennis as Honey won the Oscar for best supporting actress.
Summer theater returns to CWC in part because Myers, who for the past three years has volunteered to teach English in distant lands, needs to be occupied. “I wasn’t going anywhere this summer and I get dangerous when I’m not busy,” he said.
Fehring plays Martha who is married to George (Sifuentes), a history professor at a New England college. Following a faculty party, the couple invites another professor Nick and his wife Honey, played by LaCross and Thornton, to their home. Once at home, Martha and George continue drinking and engage in verbal and sometimes physical abuse in front of Nick and Honey. The younger couple is startled by their behavior yet they stay until dawn. Written and set in 1962, the play is an “examination of everything about America; marriage, family and values,” Myers explained.
Thornton said the cast’s acting skills and the authenticity of the characters can be closely scrutinized by the audience because they will be so close. “It’s like film acting, you can’t get away with anything,” Myers said. He said Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf is very entertaining. “It’s horrifying and funny at the same time,” he said of the drama that has a great deal of black comedy. “This is some of the best acting we’ve ever had at CWC, and one of the best plays. It’s worth an investment in an evening.”
The show is presented July 24-28 at 7:30 p.m. and there is a 2:30 p.m. matinee on July 29. Tickets are $5 and can be reserved by emailing Myers or by calling him at 855-2217. Tickets are available at the door, but Myers recommends calling ahead as seating is limited to 70 for each performance.