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BC Theatre Starts Rumors

The Berea College Theater Laboratory began its 2005-06 season on October 21 with Rumors by Neil Simon, which marks the directorial debut of Rodney Clark, the newest member of the theater faculty.

Rumors follows “a crazy cast of characters [that] have joined together to celebrate a friend’s 10th anniversary, when a sudden and uproarious cover-up creates mayhem and folly.” Rumors also features a delightful cast of ten talented and diverse students, with scenic and lighting design by Shan R. Ayers; costume design by Mary Ann Shupe; make-up and hair design by Morgan Younge; sound design by Virte Fogarty and props design by Chenoa Shannon.

The cast of characters, in order of appearance, includes Chris Gorman played by Kirsten Rogers, a sophomore English and business major from Clarksville, TN. The character of Ken Gorman is played by Stephen Drabicki, a senior theatre and art major from Hendersonville, N.C. Claire Ganz is played by Riyam Bashir, a junior theatre major from Jerusalem, Palestine. Lenny Ganz is played by CeDarian Dewayne Crawford, a freshman from Birmingham, AL. Cookie Cuzak is played by Nina Yarbrough, a freshman theatre major from Cincinnati. Ernie Cuzak is played by Thomas Asher, a freshman from Hoover, AL. Glenn Cooper is played by Mark Cashwell, a senior theatre major from Tompkinsville. Cassie Cooper is played by Elizabeth Nolana sophomore from Seabrook, NH. The character of Officer Welch is played by Christopher Kemper, a senior theatre major from Madison, IN. The character of Officer Pudney is played by Andi Bowers, a freshman theatre major from Sevierville, TN.

Rodney Clark recently came to Berea from Tulsa, Oklahoma, where he was an assistant professor and coordinator of the theatre program at Tulsa Community College. Clark’s decision to select a comedy didn’t come without much deliberation. “I just didn’t know what I wanted to do,” he says. “But I didn’t want to anything serious or heavy-handed. Definitely didn’t want to deal with race or gender issues.” After leading a demonstration with students at the McGaw Theater, Clark realized that a comedy would be a perfect fit for his first foray into directing here at Berea. Clark describes Simon as being “witty, fun and farcical” and others have described Rumors as being a shining example of Simon’s best work.

Rumors will definitely be a fun evening,” says Clark. “Hopefully everyone will enjoy it.”

Performances are scheduled for October 21, 22, 26-29 at 8 pm in the McGaw Theatre. Tickets for Rumors range from $5 to $10 and are on sale now. Berea College students are admitted free of charge.

To reserve your tickets for Rumors or for more information on season subscriptions, please call the Box Office at (859) 985-3300 Monday through Friday, 1-5 pm . For more information on the BC Theater Laboratory, please click the link below or call Deborah Martin at (859) 985-3419.

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