The fall semester is in full swing, and college theater programs are already preparing for their 2013-2014 productions. Dramatic plays by both well-known playwrights and up-and-coming writers will all be represented by theater students at universities in the Philadelphia area. Attending college theater productions is a great way to be entertained without having to pay to see a professional performance at a Center City or Broadway theater. And who knows, you might see one of tomorrow’s Hollywood stars as a mere student in their first college play!
1301 W. Norris St.
Philadelphia, PA 19122
Dates: Oct. 9-20, 2013
The Department of Theater at Temple University is a reputable program with an outstanding faculty. Many students that are accepted into the program go on to have successful careers in theater, film, television and stage around the world. The award-winning Rogers and Hammerstein musical “Oklahoma!” celebrates its 75th anniversary, and Temple will be honoring the classic production this October. The original Broadway production opened in March of 1931.
800 E. Lancaster Ave.
Villanova, PA 19085
Dates: Nov. 12-24, 2013
The play “Everyman” is a late 15th-century English morality play. Characters include Death, Good Deeds, Five Wits, Discretion, Doctor, Knowledge, Messenger, Everyman, Angel, Beauty, Confession, Fellowship, God, Cousin, Kindred and Strength. This play explains how to save your soul by leading a good life as a christian. Since God is angry about the glutinous behavior of mankind and its lack of service to him, He decides to have a “reckoning of every man’s person.” Who will go to heaven and who will go to hell? Find out at a performance this fall!
Guys & Dolls
Saint Joe’s University
N 56th Street & Overbrook Avenue
Philadelphia, PA 19131
Dates: Apr. 10-26, 2014
SJU Theatre Company has produced plays and musicals at Saint Joseph’s University’s Bluett Theater for over 80 years. This fall, see the musical “Guys and Dolls,” which premiered on Broadway in 1950 and won the Tony Award for Best Musical. The story is about a New York gambler who falls for a missionary girl that he’s supposed to be bringing to Havana.
West Chester University
E.O. Bull Center for the Arts
J.Peter Adler Studio Theatre
2 E. Rosedale Ave.
West Chester, PA 19383
Dates: Feb. 27 through Mar. 2, 2013
The Department of Theatre and Dance at West Chester University prepares students for a variety of jobs in the arts by teaching skills such as communication, design, technology, performance and management. “Machinal” is a dramatic play written by Sophie Treadwell and inspired by the true story of convicted murderer Ruth Snyder, who was on death row. It’s a story about a woman who lives by the standards society expects from women while struggling to understand the purpose.
Christina Thompson is a freelance travel writer living in Philadelphia. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.