ATHENS, WV (WOAY)- Concord University will be having a haunting production this weekend to start off the month of February.
Concord’s chapter of the National Theatre Honor Society Alpha Psi Omega will be performing Bradley Walton’s “The Tree” at the Paul Theatre in their fine arts building. They held their auditions for the 35-minute-long play just before Christmas break and really hit the ground running at the beginning of the new semester. The cast talks about how their experience preparing was.
“There have been shows where I’ve done where the rehearsal process has been an absolute nightmare, and this was not one of them,” said Ryan Johnson.
“I really like being with them because they’re like me. They’re all, like, really weird, and funny,” said Rylee Hirshbirger.
“Everybody’s been very understanding, very, you know, fun with it, everything like that. So, it’s been it’s been a treat, to say the least,” said Juile Prince.
“Ultimately, I have really enjoyed it,” said Rosa Williams.
While the rehearsal process is heartwarming, don’t expect your heart to flutter when seeing it, as this show is quite the opposite.
“So, a group of friends, we go out into the woods to have a good time, really, to go hiking. And Nikki, she brings along her brother, who really, we really don’t want there, but we’re going to handle it. He’s annoying at times. We really do get frustrated,” explained Jade Cox, a cast member. “And as we’re going through, there’s a few obstacles that we cross that we start to go at each other’s throats and everything, but we resolve it hopefully.”
The director of the show and president of Alpha Psi Omega explains why he chose this show.
“Last year, around this exact time I was directing a show called ‘Asylum,’ which was to raise awareness for mental health and mental health resources. So, I love to direct drama. I think there’s a lot of depth to be found in how people perceive deeper emotions rather than, you know, laughter or lightheartedness or how we perceive anger and sadness and how we push past these emotions,” explained Jordan Simpson, director and president. “Because a lot of people, a lot of people don’t want to talk about it, but it’s something that’s very important. So, the way we perceive these different emotions is very important.”
Students at Concord do not need to major in Theatre to do shows at Concord, Colette Lindley, a nursing major, explains what brought her to this show.
“I did ‘Fiddler on the Roof’ in high school my senior year. Other than that, I had never had time in my schedule for theater. But growing up, I always was like a huge, like, fan of, like, musicals and like, I listen to them all the time, like everything,” said Lindley, a cast member. “And so, I always knew, like at some point in my life I wanted to be involved in theater, but I never really had the opportunity until, well, my senior year of high school. And then I got here, and I was like, this seems like a cool experience.”