Grace Cavanaugh ~ Staff Writer
From December 6 to December 8 at 7:00 p.m., The Shape of Things, a play by Neil LaBute, will be performed in the studio theater.
Jeff Wittman, the Professor and Chair of Theatre at the University of Lynchburg, described the play’s content in an email: “How far would you go for love? For art? What would you be willing to change? A young male college student drifts into an ever-changing relationship with an art major while his best friends’ engagement crumbles, unleashing a drama that peels back the skin of two modern-day relationships.”
Senior Sami Topping directed this performance. “It’s just about two relationships in college, so it’s pretty interesting because a lot of plays that are of literary merit do not take place in the college setting. But this is of literary merit. It’s about two couples and their different takes on love…and how far you’re willing to go for love,” said Topping.
Sophomore Jenna Bohrer, who plays the character of Evelyn, added, “It is basically about love and art and how far you would go for the two of them.”
“The people in the cast are Jenna Bohrer, Travis Carr, Dani Hicks, who’s a freshman, and Parker Jones, so it’s a nice mix,” said Topping.
According to Bohrer, “[Rehearsals] have been going really well. They’re a lot of fun. Draining, but fun.” Topping added, “We have not had that long of a rehearsal period. So, as with like Peter [and the Starcatcher]…we had had like a very long rehearsal process, this has been a very brief rehearsal process. We started the first week of November…so we’ve had about a month and some change.”
The sets for plays performed in the studio theatre in the past have been fairly miniscule, but effective. When asked about the set for The Shape of Things, Topping commented, “[The] set is interesting. We’re using projections…because it takes place in 10 distinct locations. So, like, we couldn’t have life-like sets, so we’re setting it in very bare bones, we’re just using black acting boxes and using projections to help the audience understand where it is.”
Bohrer added, “[T]he set is comprised of…four blocks. They’re basically cubes on a stage. They move, they’re different in every scene.”
The play is free to the public. According to Wittman, “Free admission and general seating. Donations accepted. Latecomers cannot be seated.”
“It should only run 90 minutes, maybe two hours,” said Topping.
Bohrer said, “This is a rated R show, so don’t think you’re coming to see a family friendly show. Doesn’t mean it’s not good, just be warned.” Wittman added that there are “mature themes and language.”
“I’m very excited about it! It should be interesting. I’ve never seen something with these themes…it’s about art and ethics, and love and ethics. It’s a very ethical piece, and I hope it gets people thinking,” said Topping.