Poughkeepsie, New York– Marist College Club of Theater Arts (MCCTA) will be entertaining audiences with two back to back Neil Simon plays on the Nelly Goletti stage this coming fall. Jim Steinmeyer has been in charge of directing the fall mainstage plays at Marist College for the past nine years. This year, however, Matt Andrews, associate professor of English/Theatre, will also be sharing the limelight with Steinmeyer as a director.
Along with adding an additional play in Marist’s repertoire this year, there will also be a change in the seating arrangements. Both shows will be presented in a more intimate setting making audience members feel like they have an actual connection with the characters on stage. Audience members will be surrounding the actors on three sides and the fourth side will serve as the background. Cast member in Jake’s Women, Lydia Deluca, gave her opinion regarding the audience set up, “At least on behalf of Jake’s Women I understand why they made the audience closer to the actors because some of the lines are said directly to the audience making them apart of the conversation within the story,” Deluca said.
MCCTA cast members are required to help build and paint the set pieces which will be later used in the shows. This required field gives actors an opportunity to get a closer look into the production side of the entire process. The two productions will be performed on different set pieces which means that cast members must put in a total of eight tech hours to help complete both sets in time for the performances. Tech hours must be completed before opening night or else individuals may not be able to audition for the spring musical.
Sophomore, Amanda Dettmann gave her honest input about her experience as a cast member in Jake’s Women thus far, “I like how there are two entirely different shows set in different time periods with different family dynamics, but I get tired of people comparing Jake’s Women to Lost in Yonkers because I want theater at Marist to always resemble closeness and unity, despite the many shows always going on at once,” Dettmann said.
There are positive factors about Marist’s decision to put on two mainstage shows this year and Deluca voiced her own opinion, “I like the larger opportunity in terms of casting for those who love performing and from a production viewpoint I think this is a fun way to experiment with a space since the audience is seated onstage right alongside the action,” Deluca said. This year is a different year for MCCTA in terms of how their fall mainstage is going to be presented to its audience members, however, sometimes change can be a good thing.
The two shows will be running in repertory over the course of two weekends in October. Lost in Yonkers will be directed by Matt Andrews and will be running October 6, 7, 12 &14 and Jake’s Women directed by Jim Steinmeyer will be running October 5, 8, 13 &15. For more information about the show and where to get tickets email, firstname.lastname@example.org