University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point Offers Immersive Theatrical Experience, 11/22-23

In the small town of Stevens Point, WI, BFA Acting Seniors Tori Mittelman and Mona Maclay are stirring up some new theatrical experiences for the community. University of Wisconsin- Stevens Point offers a conservatory training experience for BFA Actors and Musical Theatre Majors but is set in a public school.

The Seniors wanted to do a project that really challenged the norm and made people step out of their comfort zones. The cast of four, Chelsey Graunke, Joe Tufte, Molly Adams and John Ford-Dunker collaborated in a series of movement, improv, and personal story sharing to help Mittelman and Maclay create their project. The two seniors then wrote a variety of pieces for the quartet to perform, along with several movement pieces.

The idea is that the audience is completely submerged into the world with the actors through the use of video, projections, story-telling, movement and, oh yes, no seating. The pair did not want the audience to feel the kind of lazy comfort that is often associated with theatre nowadays.

Instead, the audience will enter with the actors and continue to be used as the actor's props, settings and fellow story-tellers. It is very reminiscent of Brechtian theatre, or even Artaud's Theatre of Cruelty.

This is the first time that a project of this nature has been done at UWSP and they hope it is not the last. The project is said to be centered around Women and Gender equality and some of the hard-hitting issues that both men and women face today. It is raw, honest, powerful, and definitely worth seeing.

It is showing Nov. 22-23rd at 7.30pm in the Noel Fine Arts Center, Room 283.

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