The Lipscomb Theatre Department opens its spring season with “On the Verge” Friday at 7:30 p.m in Shamblin Theatre.
Lipscomb Theatre is no stranger to unique productions, and “On the Verge” certainly isn’t a typical household show name. Instead of drawing a big-name Broadway production from a hat, Lipscomb Theatre chose a show that will give its audiences something new and refreshing.
“I think audiences will find a wonderful break from their daily routine that invites them to use parts of their minds and imaginations that get neglected far too often,” said Scott Baker, head of marketing. “I think they’ll get to consider well how to see things from another person’s point of view.”
Directed by Evelyn O’Neal Brush, this Eric Overmyer play tells the story of three female Victorian explorers adventuring a newly discovered land. As their journey begins, unexpected developments occur, placing the show’s comedy front and center.
“’On the Verge’ stands out to me firstly because of its focus on three distinctly-drawn, strong, independent women who are bucking the conventions and expectations of their day,” stated Brush. “They are capable, empowered, and confident in who they are. They also happen to be hilarious. I think audiences will totally fall in love with their quirks and their strength.”
The play features a four-person cast: Emily Meinerding (Fanny), Mary Elizabeth Roberts (Mary), Bekah Stogner (Alex) and JT Friend, who plays a whopping eight characters. Brush described this group of performers as “a true ensemble: they support, encourage, and reenergize each other throughout the whole show.”
The production will stay faithful to the original show’s script, but will provide an added aesthetic to the show’s setting. As they did with Patrick Barlow’s “The 39 Steps” in fall 2016, the show will be set “in a Vaudeville-inspired theater, and all the action of the play– the various locations, the set pieces, the props– exists within that framework.”
The production aspires to touch the minds, hearts and humors of its audience members.
“I hope our audiences will walk away feeling inspired and energized by our intrepid adventurers, and that they will find the courage in their own lives to take a brave step or try something new. Perhaps they are facing a major life decision — we want them to feel empowered to step confidently forward into the unknown!”
On the Verge will run for the next two weekends in Shamblin Theatre, Feb. 16-17, Feb. 23-24 at 7:30 p.m. and Feb. 18 and 25 at 2:30 p.m.
Tickets are $15 for adults, $12 for faculty/staff and free for students who use a special checkout code when purchasing ($5 otherwise). Students that attend either Friday performance will receive chapel credit.
“’On the Verge’ is a modern play featuring strong female lead characters. Those plays don’t come along every day, and we think it fills a wonderful role in our students’ education, and presents a very different experience for audiences than they typically get.”
Photo courtesy of CEA