Acting My Way Out of a Black Box

09.01.2009Last night I went to the first theatre meeting of the year! Yay! Theatre has become one of my main loves on campus. Last year, as a freshman, I decided that I wanted to get involved with theatre because I never had the opportunity to do so in high school and I thought it would be a fun way to meet people. And boy, I was right!

ThereÆs something to be said about ôtheatre people,ö and I think in this case itÆs okay to generalize. What I mean is that the people involved in the UD theatre department are some of the most dedicated, passionate, and crazy-in-a-good-way people that IÆve ever met.

One of the best parts about theatre at UD is that you donÆt have to be a theatre major or minor or even take any acting classes in order to be involved. In fact, most of the students arenÆt majoring or minoring in theatreùthey just do it because they love it, which in my opinion, makes it that much better. And, whatÆs more, there are different degrees of involvement so thereÆs something for everyone!

Main stage theatre is overseen by faculty members. They generally produce three showsùone in the fall, one in the winter, and a musical in the spring. These shows take place in Boll Theatre (inside the Kennedy Union) and are open to the public, complete with ticket sales, a house managerÆs curtain speech, and those cozy theatre chairs.

Studio Theatre, on the other hand, is a completely run student organization, overseen by a faculty advisor but to the largest extent autonomous, which is pretty cool. ItÆs housed in the Black Box Theatre, located in the Music and Theatre building, appropriately named because it is indeed a room with black ceiling, floor, and walls. Anyone who wants to audition is welcome to, and there are tons of opportunities to get involved behind the scenes with lighting, sound design, props, technical crew, etc. One of the best parts about Studio Theatre is the wide variety of shows it produces each year. Shows range from monologues to full-lengths to sketch comedy (like a student-written Saturday Night Live) and beyond. And, get this, all shows are completely free! As in, you donÆt have to pay to get in. How great is that?! Free, quality entertainment? Sign me up.

Also, itÆs not only an organization that puts on productions, but also holds social events like the semi-formal in the winter, midnight recess, and the Black Box Awards (the Academy Awards of UD) in the spring. Intrigued? More information about the sweet social aspects of Studio Theatre will come when they roll around this year, so stay tuned for those.

To give you a small taste of what kinds of things the UD theatre department has to offer, let me just give you a quick run-down of the shows I was involved in last year and a few other shows I saw.

Shows I was involved with (all Studio Theatre shows performed in the Black Box Theatre):

ò Unwrap Your Candyùshort, one-act plays

ò Monologue Nightùvolunteers perform a monologue of their choosing

ò A Very Special Episodeùa student-written, full-length, comedic production

Examples of other productions:

ò John & Jenùa two-person musical (Black Box)

ò Best Thing Since Facebookùsketch comedy (Black Box)

ò Speed the Plowùdirectors trying to pitch their idea (main stage)

ò Bat Boyùa musical; family tries to humanize a boy living amongst bats (main stage)

This is by no means an exhaustive list, so as you can see there are many opportunities for aspiring actors, technical crew, writers, and directors. In fact, I myself auditioned for two shows just a few hours agoùEurydice (Studio Theatre) and The Lark (Main Stage) and will hopefully be hearing the results of those auditions in the next few days.

Until next time, so long, farewell, and break a leg!