Fourth article for the Beacon! Also unedited…
Theater Department prepares for “39 Steps”
by Sydney Sheltz
The Bethel College Theater Department is finishing rehearsal for Hitchcock spin-off comedy “39 Steps” which premieres Thursday, Oct. 2, 2014 at 7:30 p.m.
The show is described as a realistic and slap-stick comedy with a fast-paced plot. With allusions to several Hitchcock films, the spy story is full of intrigue and clichés that only add to the seriousness of the international organization and the manhunt within the plot.
Junior and theatre major Sarah Beason said, “The funny appeal of the show is different from what we’ve done in the past and it’s definitely student-friendly. It’s a good show for our demographic.”
The production features a cast of four people playing a total of 24 roles. Beason has three roles as the lead female while her lead counterpart, Cam Matteson, only plays one. The other two supporting players play a total of 20 roles. Theatre Department Chair Richard Young is directing the performance.
For the past few weeks, rehearsals have been lasting three or four hours a night, depending on how many scenes the cast is working on. The rehearsals are scheduled from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. However, the rehearsal times will change from 6:00 p.m. to midnight the week before the show opens.
“We auditioned the first Monday of school and started rehearsals that Wednesday,” said Matteson when asked how long preparations for the show have been under way.
Since the story is so complex as compared to other shows, there will not be a material set on stage. There is a minimal set and only a few props to account for the many scene changes. A white blank wall has been constructed on the stage and pictures of the set will be projected onto the screen in order to create the background.
This unique aspect of the show isn’t the hardest part. “The real challenge is not laughing during rehearsal,” said Beason.
“39 Steps” will premiere Thursday, Oct. 2, 2014 at 7:30 p.m. There will be another night showing at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 3, 2014. A matinee will be offered on Saturday, Oct. 4, 2014 at 1 p.m. followed by the final performance on the same day at 7:30 p.m.