Community invited to try out for plays, dance concert

Saturday, August 17, 2002

The last time the Department of Theatre and Dance at Southeast Missouri State University invited members of the community to audition for a university theater production, they were seeking to fill out the large cast for "The Music Man."

Now the university is welcoming members of the community to audition for two plays to be performed this fall.

University productions have always been open to the community, said Dr. Kenn Stilson, chairman of the department, but the university has only advertised that fact on certain occasions.

At the departmental retreat last Wednesday, the faculty decided to put a priority on promoting more community involvement, Stilson said.

"From this point forward, we're going to make it a point to always announce our auditions to the general public and to let them know they are welcome to participate in our productions."

Working with community actors will be a good learning tool for university students, Stilson said.

After open house

The auditions will be held at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday at Rose Theatre on the Southeast campus. The auditions will begin after the department's open house from 6 to 7 p.m. at the theater. The public is invited.

Community members also are being invited to play a role in the dance concert "Zaum: Beyond Significance," an original performance piece by dance professors Josephine and Paul Zmolek. Those auditions are Aug. 28. Those who audition are asked to dress comfortably and wear soft-soled shoes.

The first production will be "Sainte-Carmen of the Main," a Canadian play set in Montreal's rundown entertainment district called the Main. The play focuses on an idolized country music singer who returns to the Main from a trip to Nashville yodeling and telling the denizens the truth about themselves.

Those who audition must prepare a one-minute selection from poetic tragedy. Parts are for two men, four women and a mixed chorus of 9 to 15. This play in particular needs older actors and actresses, Stilson said.

Scripts may be checked out for 24 hours at Room 217 of the Grauel Building.

The play will be presented Sept. 27-28 and Oct. 3-6.

The second play is "Don't Dress for Dinner," a fast-paced French bedroom farce. The roles are for three men and three women.

Scripts are available for 24-hour checkout at the Kent Library Reserve Desk.

The play will be presented Nov. 8-9 and 14-17 at the Rose Theatre.

335-6611, extension 182

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