By Jeff Murphy, September 8, 2023
WARRENSBURG, MO – Enjoy an evening of entertainment as University of Central Missouri Theatre and Dance presents “With Laughs” featuring four student-directed one-act plays. Performances include “A Timely Maneuver” by Emmett Loverde, “Sure Thing” by David Ives, “Jimmy The Antichrist” by Keith J. Powell, and “Brothers Grimm Spectaculathon” by Don Zolidis. These shows will be performed on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, Sept. 14-16. Doors open at 7 p.m. and curtain is at 7:30 p.m.
The “With Laughs” Studio One-Acts will be performed in the Nickerson Black Box Theatre located on the first floor of Nickerson Hall. All of the plays are directed, designed, and performed by UCM students.
A “Timely Maneuver” is a play about uptight Jane, played by Josie Hougham, who gets a surprise when her wild blind date, Reggie, played by Jake Collins, places an egg timer on their table. When the timer buzzes five minutes later, Reggie shocks Jane with an unexpected proposition. Get ready for a comedy filled with unexpected twists. “A Timely Maneuver” is written by Emmet Loverde with direction and technical direction provided by Hanna Wilson.
“Sure Thing” begins with Bill, played by Aidan DePaul, walking into a cafe trying to make small talk with Betty, played by Katherine Hamilton. Things don’t seem to go quite right for either of them in the ensuing conversation, but they have plenty of time to get things right with the sound of a bell that takes them to the moment things went awry. It’s not until the small things are brought back into focus that they start to make progress with each other. (Content disclosure: This play includes strong language.) “Sure Thing” is written by David Ives, with direction by Caleb Wands and technical direction by Stephanie Heathcock.
“Jimmy The Antichrist” takes place at Thanksgiving at the Bailey household. It takes a twist when Jimmy, played by Chris Schilligo, and his new friend, Colin, played by Trae Salemaea, return home from their first semester of college. Jimmy reluctantly "outs" himself and reveals that he is the Antichrist. The family consists of Joyce, played by Claire Groos; Denise, portrayed by Kaia Trujilo; the father, Frank, played by Finn Juliano; and Aunt Cathy, played by Raegan Medlock. The family doesn’t take the news well and refuses to accept Jimmy The Antichrist’s alternative lifestyle. (Content disclosure: This play includes strong language and mentions of religion.) “Jimmy The Antichrist” is written by Keith J. Powell, with direction by Keyvon Lewis, and technical direction by Makenzie Lewis.
“Brothers Grimm Spectaculathon” consists of Two Narrators, played by Maysen Camara and Grace Clark, and a group of actors who attempt to recreate some of the fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm in a wild, fast-paced extravaganza. This is an over-the-top comedy that includes audience participation, improv, and lots and lots of laughs. Several fairy tale characters are portrayed by Mason Enright, Shaylee Lundy, and Quinn Allen. (Content disclosure: This play includes scenes that portray or mention death, murder, violence, drug use, sexual humor, gunshots, and mature language.) The “Brothers Grimm Spectaculathon” is written by Don Zolidis, with direction by Danny Gage and technical direction by Matthew Kimbel. The faculty advisors for this set of studio productions are Dr. Aaron Scully and Alice Combs.
Tickets are free for UCM students. General public tickets are $1 and are available at the door. There is limited seating in the Black Box Theatre so arriving early is highly encouraged. Parking is available in the Jerry M. Hughes Athletic Center (formerly Multipurpose Building) parking lot. For additional information, please contact Dr. Aaron Scully at email@example.com. (UCM Theatre and Dance student Caleb Wands contributed this news release.)