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Northwestern Theatre and Dance to present original student work Friday and Saturday
Mar 29, 2012 | 286 views | 0 0 comments | 3 3 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Members of the cast are Alexis Smith of Mandeville, Sharla Mills of Fourney, Texas. Myesha-Tiara McGarner and Shannon Harger of Baton Rouge, Tyler Price of New Orleans and Sarah Folkins of Slidell.
Members of the cast are Alexis Smith of Mandeville, Sharla Mills of Fourney, Texas. Myesha-Tiara McGarner and Shannon Harger of Baton Rouge, Tyler Price of New Orleans and Sarah Folkins of Slidell.
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Northwestern Theatre and Dance will present an original student production, A Work in Progress, March 30-31 at 7:30 p.m. and March 31 at 2 p.m. in Theatre West. Admission is free and open to the public. Timothy Callais is the director.

This play has been built from scratch using long-form improvisation and scene study,” said Callais, a theatre major from Baton Rouge. “We're taking the cast of six’s real life experiences, and skeletons, wants and desires, throwing it into a big melting pot, creating substantial characters and improvising magic.”

Members of the cast are Alexis Smith of Mandeville, Sharla Mills of Fourney, Texas. Myesha-Tiara McGarner and Shannon Harger of Baton Rouge, Tyler Price of New Orleans and Sarah Folkins of Slidell.

“We want to exhibit long-form improvisation as a tool that any actor, writer or director can use,” said Callais. “We want to show the power that can come between two people and what the human mind is capable of. There is no finished product in art, only deadlines.”

Callais said the cast is working from a general outline, but is using the freedom they have to try new things.”

“It’s informed improv. We know the characters, but what happens between them isn’t settled,” he said. “Every time could be something a little different.”

Price, a freshman, is doing his first improv work.

“When I found out about this, I was both scared and excited,” said Price. “I have never done anything like it, but it has been rewarding and challenging for me. The character I play is loosely based on me and has forced me to face certain issues. I have enjoyed finding myself in the character.”

According to Callais, examples of long-form improvisation include films by director Christopher Guest like This is Spinal Tap. He thinks the issues explored will hit home with a college audience.

“College such an important time for many people. It’s a time when you go through new adventures,” he said. “I'm very proud of my cast and our department for allowing me to do this type of experiment. It’s working better than expected.”

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