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K-State Today

April 17, 2013

Star power: Theatre, dance programs plan season of drama, comedy and original choreography

Submitted by Communications and Marketing

The Kansas State University theatre and dance programs will present a variety of music, comedy, drama and dance productions for the 2013-2014 season.

K-State Theatre will kick off the season with the powerful docudrama "Columbinus" by Stephen Karam and P.J. Paparelli. More than 14 years have passed, but the tragic Columbine High School shootings still resonate today. Examining bullying, alienation, hostility and social pressure in high schools, "Columbinus" explores the dark recesses of American adolescence. Performances will be at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 10-12 and 17-19, with a matinee 2:30 p.m. Oct. 20, all in Nichols Theatre. Jennifer Vellenga, assistant professor of theatre, will direct.

The Broadway favorite "Chicago,"by John Kander, Fred Ebb and Bob Fosse, will be the second show of the season. This award-winning musical is set in the prohibition era and based on the tumultuous events captured by reporter Maurine Dallas Watkins, who was assigned to cover the 1924 trials of murderesses Beulah Annan and Belva Gaertner for the Chicago Tribune. The story is a satire on corruption in the criminal justice system and the concept of the celebrity criminal. Performances will be at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 7-9 and a matinee at 2:30 p.m. Nov. 10 in McCain Auditorium. The production will be directed by Dwight Tolar, assistant professor of theatre; choreography by Jerry Jay Cranford; music direction by Paul Hunt, professor of music; and vocal direction by Amy Rosine, assistant professor of music.

WinterDance 2013 is a showcase of many talented Kansas State University students in areas such as jazz, tap, modern and ballet. It includes original choreographed pieces by faculty and advanced students. WinterDance 2013 will be at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 5-7 and a 2:30 p.m. matinee Dec. 7, all in Nichols Theatre. 

In February 2014, K-State Theatre presents the triple Tony Award-winning comedy "God of Carnage" by Yasmina Reza. The story unravels with the meeting of two sets of parents, who gather to discuss their children's playground altercation and amicably resolve the consequences. The conversation soon devolves to chaos and spirals into a savagely funny comedy of bad manners. "God of Carnage" will be presented at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 6-8 and 13-15, 2014, with a matinee at 2:30 p.m. Feb. 16, 2014, all in Nichols Theatre. Jerry Jay Cranford will direct.

Two one-act operas will hit the stage in March 2014. K-State Opera Theatre will present the comedic Gilbert and Sullivan production of "Trial by Jury," as well as the radio opera "The Old Maid and the Thief" by Italian-American composer Gian Carlo Menotti. The evening of opera delivers a lighthearted satire concerning a breach of promise of marriage and a twisted tale of morals and evil womanly power. Reginald Pittman, professor of opera, will direct. Performances will be at 7:30 p.m. March 6-8, 2014, and a matinee at 2:30 p.m. March 9, 2014, in Nichols Theatre.

SpringDance 2014 will be an evening of lively tap and jazz, elegant ballet and unique modern dance pieces performed by talented Kansas State University students. Dance faculty and a guest artist will choreograph a variety of exciting pieces. SpringDance will be presented at 7:30 p.m. March 28-29, 2014, in McCain Auditorium.

Closing out the season, K-State Theatre will take center stage with Oscar Wilde's "The Importance of Being Earnest (A Trivial Comedy for Serious People)," a sharp-edged comedy that is considered Wilde's most popular play. Following the distressing romances of two hapless gentlemen, a series of elaborate lies are created that lead to a twisted maze of conflict and hilarity. Confronted by the regulations and expectations of Victorian society, the men inevitably surrender to the demands of their true loves, ultimately realizing the true importance of being earnest. The satire, filled with witty dialogue, physical comedy and moments of comic, sentimental drama, will be performed at 7:30 p.m. April 24-26, 2014, and May 1-3, 2014, with a matinee at 2:30 p.m. May 4, 2014, in Nichols Theatre. Charlotte MacFarland, associate professor of theatre, will direct.

Season tickets for K-State Theatre will go on sale in July. Single tickets will be available in early September at the McCain Auditorium box office, by calling 785-532-6428 or online at http://www.k-state.edu/theatre. Group discounts are also available by calling Marci Maullar at 785-532-6878.