Lyman plays to be broadcasted as radio show
Sofia Rositani – Arts & Enterainment Editor
Romanya Joseph – Contributor
As the future of Hollywood and Broadway hangs in the balance with many film, television, and theatre productions having been put on hold, the theatre community on campus has managed to come up with a way to continue their school and production work under the new COVID-19 guidelines.
In accordance with the new safety rules, this semesters first production, “An Enemy of The People,” directed by Benjamin Curns, a Professor of Theatre, will be put on as a radio show.
“The actors will play the scenes with one another through the use of microphones and headphones and those performances will be professionally recorded, edited, and made available for the SCSU and surrounding community to listen to from their own homes and devices,” said Curns.
The story centers around a scientist named Thomas Stockmann who discovers the presence of dangerous bacteria in the water.
“If Stockmann makes his discovery public, he will save lives but doom the town’s economy and his reputation. If he remains silent, he knows that people will die,” says Curns. “The play is over 150 years old but has an eerie connection to our current health crisis.”
The production leaders are still deciding on which streaming platform to use. There’s talk of using Facebook Live and Southern’s radio station. And audience members will be encouraged to make comments in the chat box during the broadcast.
There are currently no plans to have a live audience in place for any theatre productions out of concern for audience safety.
Crescent Players President Leah Herde said she is looking forward to recording the new radio production.
“An Enemy of the People is an amazing show,” said Herde. “I’ve seen a couple renditions of it, and I can proudly say our cast has some extreme talent. During a read through of the first acts, I got chills from so many of the actors. It’s crazy that people have the capability of moving others just by their voice.”
While there are no plans to have an actual play on campus with an audience, there are still thoughts of doing a live performance and streaming it, according to Chairperson of the Theatre Department Michael Skinner.
For auditions, the Crescent Players held a virtual and in-person, masks required, audition for those interested in being casted for the play “Enemy of the People.”
“The thing about the radio show is great,” said Skinner. “So we are building isolation booths so that every actor that is cast can go into their own booth with their own microphone that we will give them, and that way they can take off their mask, they will be completely surrounded and won’t be across from anyone else so we can do good clean recordings.”
Skinner said they have lightened the schedule for this semester for students because in the past students have not been able to commit to their practice schedule, so now it is four nights a week rather than five or six.
Even though there are negatives to shutting down Broadway and other theatres, Skinner said there is a positive side to it as well because now they have a new perspective on things, such as racial justice and how that has been a hot topic in the world of acting.
“We are fighting for it,” said Skinner. “My personal feeling is I think things will definitely change it will take a long time to get all the changes that we want, it’s going to be a slow process.”
Photo credit: Bria Kirklin