Oklahoma Baptist University

Theatre Season Invites Viewers to ‘Experience the Journey’

Oklahoma Baptist University's theatre department invites patrons to "Experience the Journey" of life's pathways with three productions during the 2009-10 season that focus on the adventure of life itself.

"Our first journey takes us to a small town in Indiana at the end of the 19th Century," said Laura Byland, OBU associate professor and director of theatre. "On our journey we discover how great loss leads to great love and healing. Our next journey takes us into the world of the absurd as we plunge into black holes called ‘Philadelphias;' enter a room where three chimps named Milton, Swift and Kafka re-create Hamlet; and examine the endless variations of boy meets girl. On our final journey we are recruited by Captain Braid Beard and his hornswaggelin' pirate crew for treasure burying purposes.

"Adventure, high seas and a bit of hilarity is in store for all who travel. We would be delighted to have the Shawnee community and beyond enjoy our journey with us."

The first production of the season is "Anatomy of Gray." Set in Indiana during the 1800s, the play deals with death, loss, love and healing in a unique coming-of-age story. Playwright Jim Leonard said he wrote the production while grieving the death of a personal friend and contemplating the notion that time heals all things. The production is most appreciated by adults and teens ages 13 and older.

"Anatomy of Gray" will premiere on Oct. 2 at 7:30 p.m. in OBU's Craig-Dorland Theatre. Additional shows will be Oct. 3, 9 and 10 at 7:30 p.m., with a matinee Oct. 11 at 2:30 p.m.

In November, College Players presents "All in the Timing," a collection of one-act plays written by David Ives. The world according to Ives is an odd place: his plays constitute a virtual stress test of the English language - and of the audience's capacity for disorientation and delight. The production is most appreciated by adults and teens ages 16 and older.

"All in the Timing" performances will be Nov. 20-21 at 7:30 p.m. and Nov. 22 at 2:30 p.m.

The annual OBU Theatre for Young Audiences performance will be "How I Became a Pirate," based on the book by Melinda Long. The production is a story of adventure and finding one's own heart - a path that can't be found on a treasure map. Nearly 3,000 area students see OBU's Theatre for Young Audiences production each year, which is appreciated by adults, teens and children ages 3 and older.

"How I Became a Pirate" will show April 9-10 at 7:30 p.m. and April 10-11 at 2:30 p.m.

Tickets for each show go on sale two weeks prior to opening night. To purchase tickets for any of the shows, contact the OBU theatre department at (405) 878-2347. Offices are located in Sarkeys Telecommunication Center. Tickets are $6 for students, $8 for adults and $2 for children up to 12 years old (Theatre for Young Audiences production only). Season tickets are available for students for $15 and adults for $20.

With an audience capacity of more than 200, Craig-Dorland Theatre is located in OBU's oldest building, Shawnee Hall. Once a small gymnasium, the Craig-Dorland Theatre became a jewel after renovations in 2002. Formerly the Rhetta May Dorland Theatre, named in honor of OBU's first professor of speech and theatre, the space was renamed in honor of the Cleo L. Craig Foundation of Shawnee. The Craig Foundation provided leadership support for the university's arts facilities renovation effort.

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