St. Charles Community College’s Center Stage Theatre has announced its lineup for the 2012-13 season. The season includes fives shows of varying genres from comedy to thriller and includes two Pulitzer Prize winners.
The first play of the season is Beth Henley’s Pulitzer Prize-winning dark comedy, “Crimes of the Heart.” The play, directed by Pam Cilek, SCC emeritus professor of theater, follows three sisters who reunite on the occasion of the youngest sister Babe’s recent trouble with the law. She is being accused of attempting to shoot her husband. Her explanation was that she was having a bad day. Unfortunately, the entire family has been having bad days with Pappy’s poor health, Meg’s floundering singing career and Lenny’s forgotten birthday. Together the three sisters, along with a young lawyer, work through family problems, old loves and past hurts to get Babe acquitted. Recommended for audiences in ninth grade and above. Auditions will be at 7 p.m. Monday-Tuesday, Aug. 20-21, with callbacks at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 22. Performances will be Oct. 3-7 with a matinee performance for high school students at 10 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 4.
“Stepping Out,” is a good-natured comedy by Richard Harris and directed by Lynne Snyder, SCC professor of theater. The play chronicles several months in the life of a beginning adult tap dance class. Each of the eight diverse students has his or her own reason for joining, but they make a point of coming every week to chat, relax, and if they can manage, learn a couple of dance steps. Led by Mavis, their eternally patient instructor, and accompanied by the acerbic pianist Mrs. Fraser, the students (who range from hopeless to competent) strive to master the basics of dance. But the steps and routines are just the background for the real focus of the play – the relationships and interactions of these 10 very different people. By their final performance, not only have the class members developed some degree of skill, but they have also overcome the inhibitions, awkwardness and personality conflicts that have kept them out of sync. Recommended for audiences in sixth grade and above. Auditions will be at 7 p.m. Monday-Tuesday, Oct. 8-9, with callbacks at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 10. Performances will be Nov. 14-18 with a matinee performance for high school students at 10 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 15.
Ira Levin’s “Deathtrap” is a highly successful “play-within-a-play” that tells the story of an acclaimed playwright, famous for his theatrical thrillers, who has had a recent string of flops and misfires. He is ready to try anything to reverse his fortunes even if it means bringing the killing off the page. He begins collaborating with a young student who has written the beginnings of a top-notch thriller. Through a series of twists and turns, the characters’ real intentions all begin to shine through. The trap is set, and not everyone will make it out alive. Recommended for audiences in ninth grade and above. Auditions will be at 7 p.m. Tuesday-Wednesday Jan. 22-23, with callbacks at 7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 24. Performances will be March 6-10 with a matinee performance for high school students at 10 a.m. Thursday, March 7.
When Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Edward Albee’s “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf” opened on Broadway in 1962, critics raved at what became a transformational play for the American theatre. Directed by Hal Berry, SCC professor of history and theater, the play targets the modern American marriage, which broke new ground in the 1960s with its controversial profanity and sexual situations. Set in New England during the Cold War sixties, the marriage of George and Martha, with its razor-sharp dialogue and vicious taunts, is laid open for all to see. Winner of both the Tony and the New York Drama Critics Award for Best Play, it went on to become a very successful film starring Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. Recommended for audiences in ninth grade and above. Auditions will be at 7 p.m. Monday-Tuesday, March 11-12, with callbacks at 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 13. Performances will be April 24-28 with a matinee performance for high school students at 10 a.m. Thursday, April 25.
The final show of the season will be “A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to the Forum,” a musical based on the book by Burt Shevelove and Larry Gelbart, with music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim. Directed by Lynne Snyder, SCC professor of theater, this fast-paced, outrageous, irreverent show is set on a stage in ancient Rome. Comedy reigns supreme when a thoroughly disarming slave named Pseudolous schemes to gain his freedom by helping his master’s son get the girl he desires. What ensues is a riot of mistaken identities, plot twists, remarkable coincidences and slapstick comic routines, which blend classic Roman comedy with the infectious energy of classic vaudeville. Add Stephen Sondheim’s wonderfully witty music, some hilarious dance numbers and familiar stock characters, and you will be laughing all the way home! Recommended for audiences in sixth grade and above. Vocal/acting auditions will be at 7 p.m. Tuesday-Wednesday, May 21-22; dance auditions and callbacks will be 7 p.m. Thursday, May 23. Performances will be July 23-28.
Unless otherwise noted, all shows will be presented at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday-Thursday, 8 p.m. Friday-Saturday and 2 p.m. on Sundays in the theater of the Donald D. Shook Fine Arts Building (FAB) on the SCC campus, located at 4601 Mid Rivers Mall Drive in Cottleville.
Tickets are $8 for the general public; $6 for senior citizens and students; and free for SCC students with a valid I.D. Center Stage Theatre also offers “Budget Wednesdays,” where tickets are just $5 for Wednesday night productions. SCC student tickets will remain free with valid I.D. High school matinees are $5 per student and one free chaperone ticket is provided for every 15 students in attendance. High school matinee shows are at 10 a.m. on Thursdays.
St. Charles Community College is a public, comprehensive two-year community college with associate degrees and certificate programs in the arts, business, sciences and career-technical fields. SCC provides workforce training and community-based personal and professional development as well as cultural, recreational and entertainment opportunities. For more information, visit www.stchas.edu.