Noteworthy News

WCU School of Stage and Screen presenting ‘Blithe Spirit’ Nov. 18-22

A seance gone wrong sets up a collision between the ghost of a mystery writer’s first wife and his new wife in “Blithe Spirit,” a comic play set for production at Western Carolina University beginning Wednesday, Nov. 18, and continuing through Sunday, Nov. 22.

The late English playwright Noel Coward’s classic work will be presented in WCU’s Hoey Auditorium at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 18 through Saturday, Nov. 21, and at 3 p.m. Nov. 22. It is part of the Mainstage theater season presented by WCU’s School of Stage and Screen.

A seance doesn’t quite turn out as planned in “Blithe Spirit,” Noel Coward’s classic comedy to be presented at Western Carolina University beginning Wednesday, Nov. 18. From left, cast members include Ellen Dyar as Elvira, Sarah Luckadoo as Ruth Condomine, Jordyn Tracy as Madame Arcati, Autumn Bryson as Edith the maid, and Cory Phelps as Charles Condomine.

A seance doesn’t quite turn out as planned in “Blithe Spirit,” Noel Coward’s classic comedy to be presented at Western Carolina University beginning Wednesday, Nov. 18. From left, cast members include Ellen Dyar as Elvira, Sarah Luckadoo as Ruth Condomine, Jordyn Tracy as Madame Arcati, Autumn Bryson as Edith the maid, and Cory Phelps as Charles Condomine.

In the play, the socialite and writer Charles Condomine invites a medium to his house to conduct a seance, hoping to gather information for his next book. Instead, he becomes haunted by the ghost of his temperamental first wife, Elvira, who attempts to disrupt Condomine’s marriage to his second wife, Ruth, who cannot see or hear the ghost.

Brenda Lilly, assistant professor in the School of Stage and Screen, is directing the production, which includes WCU students in the principal roles. A veteran actress, writer and producer for television and stage, Lilly also previously directed “Peter Pan” and “Pump Boys and Dinettes” at WCU.

“From a pedagogical perspective, nothing teaches comedy better than a Coward production,” she said. “Timing, language, rhythm – all are in play when taking on his work. We are lucky here in the School of Stage and Screen to have such talented actors ready to take on the challenge of bringing ‘Blithe Spirit’ to life.”

The cast for WCU’s production includes Cory Phelps, a senior acting major from St. Petersburg, Florida, as Condomine; Ellen Dyar, a senior musical theatre major from Juneau, Alaska, as Elvira; Sarah Luckadoo, a senior acting major from Hickory, as Ruth; and Jordyn Tracy, a sophomore acting major from Greenville, South Carolina, as Madame Arcati, the medium who makes it all possible.

Two guest artists from the Flat Rock Playhouse, Dennis Maulden and Paul Feraldi, are assisting with the WCU production. Maulden is designing the set and Feraldi is designing the set dressing and props. Others members of the WCU community contributing to the production are Chris Collins, light design; Susan Brown-Strauss, costumes; and Jennifer Stadelman, sound design.

The show includes adult themes and is not suitable for young audiences.

Tickets are $16 for adults; $11 for senior citizens and WCU faculty and staff; and $7 in advance ($10 day of show) for students. Advance tickets are available by contacting the box office at the John W. Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center at 828-227-2479 or online at bardoartscenter.wcu.edu. Any remaining tickets will be available at Hoey Auditorium beginning one hour before each production.

By Randall Holcombe

Categories | The Reporter


Photos | WCU News Services

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