Marshall School of Theatre and Dance to present ‘The Wolves’ 


The Marshall University  School of Theatre and Dance will present “The Wolves,” a play by Sarah DeLappe, at 7:30 p.m. nightly Feb. 21-24 in the Francis-Booth Experimental Theatre at the Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center.  

“The Wolves” is an inside look at the lives of nine girls playing for an indoor soccer team and fighting their way through adolescence.  

Directed by Leah Turley, the cast includes Nikki Riniti, Eliza Aulick, Harper Aulick, Jaden Babbitt, Roza Beller, Amelya Bostic, Sierra Lutz, Reilly McClain, Samantha Phalen, and Kristen Scites.  Assisting behind the scenes will be Marshall student Rory Johnson, working as stage manager, with help from Marshall theatre faculty members Mike Murphy (scene design), Olivia Trees (costume design), and Lang Reynolds (light design). 

“ ‘The Wolves’ is set to a backdrop of soccer— warmups, specifically,” said Jack Cirillo, director of the School of Theatre and Dance. “The play is structured around the team’s preparation – the real drama of their lives happens off stage, reported to us during these training sessions. It is a neat concept. Yet almost every scene shows the team in repetitive warmup movements, stretching or jogging, so that the strength of the drama almost entirely depends on their repartee and debate. 

“We get to know these young ladies intimately, and like any great piece of theatre, we empathize and care about them,” Cirillo said. “The playwright has done a masterful job in taking us on a journey with these adolescent women. If we accept the notion that the theatre should in some way provoke an empathetic response, then this piece certainly succeeds in that idea.”  

The show is also an opportunity for Marshall students “to explore athleticism on stage while connecting to the emotional arch of teenage girls,” said Turley, assistant professor of Theatre Performance who is directing the show. That includes not only warmups but passing drills and team drills performed on stage, she said.  

“Not only are they charged with controlling the ball, but they’re also expected to continue their character arch, remember their lines, move and set their props, and listen and respond to the other actors, in real-time, no stopping, no do-overs,” Turley said.  

“Additionally, DeLappe’s play is almost a meditation on the plight of young women: they possess so much power and intelligence, but there’s nowhere for them to test their limits, so they test them with each other, socially,” she added. “The play also says a lot about how we regard the emotions and desires of teenage girls, often with disdain and disgust. It’s an honest portrayal of how teenage girls behave when their parents aren’t around.”  

Tickets are free for Marshall students with a valid Marshall ID; $15 for senior citizens and Marshall employees; and $22 for general admission. They can be purchased at the Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center box office or by calling 3034-696-ARTS.  

For more information about Marshall’s School of Theatre and Dance, visit 

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