Marshall University Theatre Alliance and Lunar Strategem will collaborate for
the 2012 New Works Project with the presentation of a new play, "Dead Letter
Office." The play will open at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, June 14, and run through
Saturday, June 16.
The New Works Project is a contemporary theatre organization that develops, promotes and presents theatrical readings of plays in the earliest stages of development. Currently in its 6th season, New Works has presented the writings of playwrights both locally and nationally and has presented works of all “shapes and sizes,” including full-lengths plays, shorts, one-act plays, musicals, children’s plays, screenplays and TV pilots.
The most interesting feature of New Works Project, said Jack Cirillo, associate
professor of theatre at Marshall, is the audience collaboration session that
takes place after each evening’s presentation. The session offers audience
members a chance to give feedback directly to the playwright and company in an
effort to bring the play that much closer to full production.
Cirillo, who is managing artistic director of the New Works Project, noted that while the concept of play development in a performance may be unusual in the Tri-State area, the concept is a mainstay of American theatre.
“Play development is a collaborative event, and in order to succeed in its mission, the participation of actor, director and audience member is essential,” Cirillo said. “This year, the New Works Project takes a step forward in presenting a fully-mounted production of a world-premiere play, created and staged by world renowned theatre-maker, Matthew Earnest, and performed by the Huntington-based theatrical ensemble, The Lunar Strategem.”
"Dead Letter Office" takes place in an underground bunker in an unnamed, post-capitalist city, where three anonymous Baroque figures are charged with deciphering and re-routing the world’s undeliverable mail. As the only ones on earth still adept with language, their job has been solid for over two centuries. But today the tables will turn--these cloistered and oblivious workers will learn that the Enlightenment ended decades ago, and that their services are no longer needed.
“We are giving the audience the opportunity to experience the thrill of the birth of a new play, and to share their thoughts and reactions to the piece with the director, cast and organization after the presentation,” Cirillo said.
Suggested donation for admission is $5. For more information, call the Marshall University Theatre box office at 304-696-2787.
Photo: The cast of the new play, "Dead Letter Office," is
preparing for its opening June 14.
|Return to newsletter front page.|
The Office of University Communications publishes the e-newsletter, "We Are...Marshall" for the university community.
To suggest a story idea, please contact the editor, Pat Dickson, on the South Charleston campus. The current issue contains the deadline date for the next issue.
To read the newsletter online for issues prior to May 6, 2010, you need the Adobe Acrobat Reader.