Concord theatre students prepare for first production since pandemic struck

ATHENS, WV (WOAY) – Concord University is hosting plays again after having to cancel shows earlier this year due to the pandemic. 

Earlier this year, Concord’s theatre department had to cancel their productions due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, the students are preparing to relaunch the shows and get back on stage. According to Karen Vuranch, a theatre instructor with Concord, the students are eager to start their shows once again.

“Concord University will be presenting the play Arsenic and Old Lace. We were supposed to present it last April, but with the pandemic it was closed down. So we’re trying to get the show up quickly.”

To keep things safe, actors will be distanced on the stage and a limited number of seats will be available per show. Masks are also required in the theatre. This is a stark difference to the typical audience and actor interaction during productions, but Vuranch says it’s necessary. 

“No one is happy with the precautions, but everyone does the precautions. That’s what we’re doing. This is our life these days isn’t it? And hopefully that will end, but in the meantime we have to be careful. And Concord is being extremely careful.”

Later this season, the theatre department plans to host productions via Zoom as well. These productions will be a first for the student actors, and will provide an entirely different experience. 

“It is limiting in that you don’t get the interaction from the audience that you crave as an actor. But the difference is there’s a real intimacy and you feel really close to the actors and the audience. The audience is able to chat with you and there’s some really good things that happen.”

Arsenic and Old Lace will be performed from September 9-13. 30-40 tickets will be available per show, and anyone interested in the theatre is encouraged to get a ticket and participate in the production. 

Anyone interested in attending one of the shows can call the the Concord Communication Arts and Media department to purchase a ticket for $5.