Scary, funny and intense

MCC produces three shows during the 2017-2018 season

Mikaela Hoover

The MCC Theatre Department presents three shows this season full of scares, laughs and adventures.

“In looking at play selection, you need to look at the season as a whole. I selected the following shows as a season, not as individual productions,” David Lane says. So, Lane chose, “The Uninvited,” “Once Upon a Mattress,” and “On the Verge.”

David Lane is starting his eighth year as the theater instructor/director at MCC. Lane got his Master of Arts in theater education at Fontbonne University in St. Louis, Mo.

During the 2017-2018 season, the MCC Theatre Department is putting on “The Uninvited,” first, which is a classic ghost story portrayed in three acts. Pam Fitzgerald and her brother, Roddy, leave London for the west side of England and discover a long empty house, for a dirt-cheap price. Soon after they purchase it, they realize why it was empty for so long. There may or may not have been a murder 15 years ago. They find out a woman in town, Mary Meredith, used to live in that house, and her daughter is the key to figuring out the puzzle.

Stage Manager Allie Davis says, “I’m really excited for this production.” Her job will be to run lights, special effects and sound.

“Tech-wise, the show will be difficult,” Lane says. The technical aspect of this show is a heavy load for the lone stage manager. Davis has her work cut out for her this fall.

“The other difficult part about this play is we have to set the right atmosphere. We have to draw the audience in,” Lane says. “That will be the biggest challenge for the actors in this show.”

“I keep David and the cast in check,” Davis said, laughing. “I also do all the cool stuff, which is all the behind the scenes things, like projections and light cues.”

Davis says she impatiently anticipates the final productions. “We have so many light cues for this show,” she says. “I can’t wait to set them up and create the scenes.” “The Uninvited” will show Nov. 10, 11, 12, 17, 18 and 19.


‘Once Upon a Mattress’

Lane strives to include as many students as possible in his productions. “‘Once Upon a Mattress’ will be the least difficult tech-wise.” Lane says. It does not have many special effects, but the cast will be lively and funny enough to keep the laughter flowing, he says.

In “Once Upon a Mattress,” King Sextimus is unable to speak due to a curse cast by his horrible wife, Queen Aggravain. The Queen has taken over the kingdom, and is attempting to keep Prince Dauntless from marrying and taking the kingdom back. She has made it known that only a princess who can pass her impossible test can marry her son. Nobody else in the kingdom may marry until Prince Dauntless does.

“This is a broad comedy Broadway show. The audience should get plenty of laughs from this show and the actors will get to experience acting in a broad comedy, which is slightly larger and more exaggerated than a drama, where it must be real and believable,” Lane says. “This is a very funny script with a big cast, so I can give a very large group of students the opportunity to perform in the production.”

Once Upon a Mattress audition dates are 3-5 p.m. and 6-9 p.m. Dec. 4 and 3-5 p.m., Dec. 6 in the Little Theater.

The show premiers March 1, and will show every day through March 4.


‘On the Verge’

“‘On the Verge’ is an abstract play about Victorian era women exploring in the jungle and traveling through time,” Lane says.

Bold time-traveling explorers Mary, Fanny and Alex, come together in the late 19th century to take on Terra Incognita. As they make their way through jungles, across a bottomless gorge, and thin-as-glass ice sheets, the women remember their past adventures and face new ones.

“This play is more intellectual than the other two and will be more challenging tech-wise and for the audience,” Lane says. Lane expresses his love for things out of the norm, something a lot of theater kids can relate to.

“I am drawn to abstract and absurdist plays, so I try to work them in when I can. Two springs ago we produced ‘Wonder of the World,’ which was an absurdist play,” Lane says. “On the Verge,” “makes a great finish to our season and will contrast the other two shows nicely.”

“On The Verge” audition dates are 3-5 p.m. and 6-9 p.m., March 6, and 3-5:30 p.m. March 7.

The show premiers April 20 and continues April 21, 22, 27, 28 and 29.