Theatre to Premiere ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’

OBU’s Theatre Department will continue its 2011-12 season with a production of “The Importance of Being Earnest,” a satirical narrative of love and mistaken identity. The production will premiere Friday, March 2, at 7:30 p.m., in Shawnee Hall’s Craig-Dorland Theatre on the OBU campus.

In the production, Algernon (left), played by Chuck Porter, is scolded by Jack, played by Robert Mills.

Other performances will be presented March 3 at 7:30 p.m., March 4 at 2:30 p.m., and March 8, 9 and 10 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are now on sale for all performances.

Written by Oscar Wilde, “The Importance of Being Earnest” tells the comical tale of two young gentlemen living in England in the 1890s. Both men use the same pseudonym -– “Ernest” -– on the sly, which causes no problems until they fall in love with different women using the same name. Wilde’s rich and dramatic portrayals of the human condition came during the height of prosperity in London during the Victorian Era of the late 19th century. At a time when many citizens of Britain were able to embrace literature only the wealthy and educated had been able to afford, Wilde wrote many famous short stories, plays and poems.

The production is directed by Dr. Jeffery Wells, OBU associate professor of theatre, with lighting design by Jonathan Studstill, a 2011 OBU graduate, and set design by Wells.

In the production, Lady Bracknell grills Jack to assess his suitability as a potential husband for her daughter. Lady Bracknell is played by Cylie Hall, and Jack is played by Robert Mills.

The performers include: Robert Mills, a junior theatre major from San Antonio, Texas, as Jack/Ernest; Charles Porter, a senior applied communication major from Owasso, Okla., as Algernon; Avery Ketchum, a sophomore theatre and anthropology major from Bixby, Okla., as Gwendolyn; Joy Fait, a senior theatre major from Arvada, Colo., as Cecily; Cylie Hall, a senior theatre major from Norman, Okla., as Lady Bracknell; Hilary Lombard, a sophomore interdisciplinary major from Stillwater, Okla., as Miss Prism; Jack C. Hays from Shawnee, Okla., as Reverend Chausable; Brayden Lans, a freshman psychology: pre-counseling major from Fort Collins, Colo., as Lane; and Jeffery Dockall, a freshman applied ministry major from Duncan, Okla., as Merriman.

General admission is $5 for students and $10 for adults. The production is most appreciated by audience members ages 12 and older. Tickets are available through the OBU Box Office, located in Sarkeys Telecommunication Center’s main office. The Box Office is open Monday-Friday from 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

For more information or to purchase tickets, call (405)-878-2347 or email