Baylor Theatre Sets The Stage With Three Summer Plays

June 25, 2003

by April K. Martin, Student Newswriter

Baylor Theatre will unveil a series of plays in repertory June 19-29 in Theatre 11 in the Hooper-Schaefer Fine Arts Building on the Baylor University campus.

Three separate plays will be presented, beginning with the national premiere of "The Actor" by Pulitzer Prize and two-time Academy Award-winner Horton Foote at 7:30 p.m. June 19 and 28 and at 2:30 p.m. June 29; "Childe Byron" by Romulus Linney at 7:30 p.m. June 20-21 and at 2:30 p.m. June 28; and "I Read About My Death in Vogue Magazine" by Lydia Sargent at 2:30 p.m. June 22 and at 7:30 p.m. June 26-27.

A biographical take on Foote's life, "The Actor" tells of a young man who finds a kind of spiritual calling to be an actor but endures social disapproval and financial woes in a small town of Texas. Director Steven Day said "The Actor" is very "personal" to him, explaining that he wants the audience to "see the passion the boy has for acting" and "to possibly question what they're passionate for" and willing to endure to attain a goal. The renowned Foote also serves as Baylor's Visiting Distinguished Dramatist and will be celebrated in March 2004 for his remarkable contributions to American theatre during the Horton Foote American Playwrights Festival, which will be held on the Baylor campus.

"Childe Byron" tells the story of Augusta Ada, daughter of Lord Byron, who was known for his unequivocal success as a poet, as well as his scandalous reputation as a dissolute man. "It all comes down to family relationships," said Kelly Russell, a Baylor graduate student and the play's director. "Childe Byron" reveals the daughter's obsession with the father she never knew, while also unmasking her indifference to him.

"I Read About My Death in Vogue Magazine" is an upbeat take on how Americans responded to feminism in the 1950s, said the play's director Chris Day. Examining the variations in the character of the women involved - "from the militant anarchist to the peppy women's studies professor" - Day said the script will have theatergoers "laughing at the play, but also laughing at [themselves]." The play also is filled with music, dancing and crowd interaction.

With an extraordinary congruence of history, biography and humor, the theatre department hopes to bring in and entertain audiences of all ages, said Dr. Marion Castleberry, associate professor of theatre and director of graduate studies. In the past, Castleberry said, there were never enough graduate students to do such plays, "but this is a whole new world now."

Tickets for individual performances are $6. A repertory ticket for all three shows is $14. For more information, call 710-4865.

Looking for more news from Baylor University?