February 25, 2011
Starring in this weekend's production of "The Glass Menagerie" at The College of Wooster are (from left) Darius Dixon, Nina Takacs, Kenneth Perry, and Aviva Neff.
WOOSTER, Ohio — The College of Wooster’s Department of Theatre and Dance will present Tennessee Williams’ classic drama “The Glass Menagerie” this weekend (March 3-5) and, in the process, pay tribute to the late Annetta Jefferson, professor of theater at Wooster for more than two decades.
“Annetta had great admiration for Williams,” said Dale Seeds, professor of theatre and scene designer whom Jefferson hired in 1984. “She loved serious modern dramas with social commentary, particularly those by Williams. In fact, she directed ‘The Glass Menagerie’ as part of her Stage Right Repertory productions in the mid-eighties. Those of us in the department thought this would be an appropriate way to honor her memory.”
Directed by Shirley Huston-Findley, associate professor of theatre at Wooster, this year’s production features sophomore Darius Dixson as Tom, first-year Aviva Neff as Laura, sophomore Kenneth Perry as Jim, and senior Nina Takacs as Amanda. “It’s a very diverse group,” said Seeds, “much the way Annetta would have cast it. These are challenging roles for young actors, but that’s the way she would have wanted it. She believed in pushing the actors to give their best effort. She demanded integrity in all of her productions, and that commitment continues to influence the department.”
Junior Bronwyn Schlaefer and first-year Lilian Nguyen will serve as stage manager and assistant stage manager, respectively. In addition, sophomore Paul Swanson is the property master; Charlene Gross is the costume designer; Jody Tidwell is the lighting designer; and Chuck Findley is the sound designer.
“The Glass Menagerie” opened to rave reviews in Chicago in 1944 and moved to Broadway one year later where it won the New York Drama Critics Circle Award. The play is presented through the eyes of Tom, a sympathetic character caught between his loyalty to his family (mother Amanda and sister Laura), which had been abandoned by his father, and the natural desire to live his own life. The tension climaxes as Amanda becomes obsessed with finding a suitor for her daughter, Laura, who passes the time by engaging her collection of glass animals in the menagerie. Eventually, Tom brings home a friend (Jim), leaving everyone hoping that Laura’s years of loneliness will soon be brought to an end.
Performances will be held in Freedlander Theater (329 E. University St.) beginning at 8:15 p.m. each evening. Tickets are $9 for general admission seats, $6 for senior citizens, faculty, staff, and non-Wooster students (Wooster students will be admitted at no charge, but they are advised to pick up their tickets in advance). Additional information is available by calling 330-263-2241.
1189 Beall Avenue, Wooster, Ohio 44691. (330) 263-2000
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