School Department News

Theatre and Communication

Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 9:07am
Auditions for cast and interviews for crew positions for the 40th season of William Carey University’s Carey Dinner Theatre (CDT) will be held at 10 a.m. on Saturday, March 21 in the Joe and Virginia Tatum Theatre on the Hattiesburg campus.
CDT presents two musicals in June and July. Each member of the company is paid. The financial package includes salary, tips from serving during dinner and housing.
Those auditioning as performers will present a one-minute monologue from a modern prose play (no dialect), a one-minute vocal selection from a Broadway musical and will participate in a dance audition. An accompanist will be available, but will not transpose. Taped accompaniment may be used. Each person who auditions should bring comfortable clothes for the dance audition.
Audition requirements for pianists include a prepared two-minute selection from a Broadway musical. Sight reading will be required.
Interviews will be held for technicians, costume assistants, box office managers and office assistants. Each person will complete an application and an interview with CDT staff. Portfolios are invited. Performers may also apply for staff positions.
Each applicant should bring a head shot to the audition/interview. Contracts are offered only to those who have graduated from high school by May 25, 2015. The company commitment is May 25 through July 20.
For more information, call (601) 318-6218 or email
Carey Dinner Theatre, founded in 1975, has a long tradition of excellence. In its history, more than 60 colleges and universities in addition to Carey have been represented by students in the company.
Tuesday, February 17, 2015 - 2:41pm
Two William Carey University theatre majors received awards at the recent Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (KCACTF) in Albany, Ga.
Winning students competed against other theatre programs from Region 4 KCACTF, which includes universities from nine states, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. Design awards are given in two separate categories, David Weiss and Barbizon. Weiss awards are given for unrealized production designs, or plays not produced on stage, and Barbizon awards are given for plays produced on stage within the academic year.
Joey Roderick of Blue Ridge, Ga., received a first place award in Barbizon design for his presentation of the sound co-design for the Carey production of “Scenes from Argonautika.” He received an all-expense paid trip to Washington, D.C., for the national festival in April, which includes workshops with professional designers and a national competition against the other seven regional winners. Billy Burkes of Meridian is sound co-designer for the production.
Jana Barkley of Picayune placed first in the David Weiss design competition for her set design of “Medea.” She also received honorable mentions for her set co-design with Chris Permenter of Oak Grove and her lighting co-design with Billy Burkes for “Scenes from Argonautika.” She also received the Stagecraft Institute of Las Vegas (SILA) Award given to students who exhibit successful potential in theatre arts. The SILA award includes a trip to Las Vegas and a week-long summer intensive theatre workshop.
Carey Theatre’s group was also recognized with a standout showing in the Devised Theatre category. Students were given a prompt from the KCACTF in the fall and had to write and develop a show. The 2015 devised theatre show was written and performed by freshmen and sophomore theatre majors Nicoli Hutchison of Carriere, Logan McCarty of Hattiesburg, Sawyer Walters of Oak Grove and Nadia Trinanes of Hattiesburg.
The students are mentored by Tim Matheny, chair of the theatre and communication department and Dewey Douglas, assistant professor of theatre design and technical director.
Friday, January 23, 2015 - 3:55pm
William Carey University will present Lisa Loomer’s “Bocon,” an award-winning fable filled with humor and enchantment, at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, February 10 and at 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. on Saturday, February 14 in the Joe and Virginia Tatum Theatre on the Hattiesburg campus.
“Bocon” is a studio piece designed, directed and performed by Carey students. Actors include both theatre majors and students from various levels of Spanish classes. Student directors are Chris Permenter of Hattiesburg and Billy Burkes of Lauderdale. Other cast members include Taylor Abbott of Picayune, Ashlyn Watts of Picayune, Logan McCarty of Hattiesburg, Haley Genberg of Warren, Penn., Nadia Trinanes of Hattiesburg, Xavier Martin of Hattiesburg, Nicoli Hutchinson of Picayune, Miranda Rester of Sumrall, Treya Brown of Hattiesburg, Baxter Walters of Hattiesburg, Amanda Gibson of Columbia, Michaela McCraw of Rapid City, S.D., Gunner Stewart of Petal, Zachary Singletary of Madison, Alisha Fishel of Olive Branch, Devin Sorrell of Bardstown, Ky., and Lindsay Knight of Hattiesburg.
The fable, written in response to the turmoil in Central America during the late 1980s, tells the story of the 12-year-old Miguel, an irrepressible “bocon” (the Spanish word for big mouth). Miguel, a natural storyteller, loses his voice when his parents are taken away by a military regime. He then begins a metaphorical journey north to Los Angeles. The journey shows Miguel meeting a host of dangerous magical spirits and again finding his voice along with the courage to cross the border into a new life.
Permenter said the fable is a remarkable tale that appeals to anyone.
“It’s a very challenging piece because the show is written and performed in both Spanish and English,” said Permenter. “However, it has a beautiful message that will touch a place in everyone’s heart.”
Admission to “Bocon” is free, but advance reservations are required. Reservations may be made by calling (601) 318-6221. The box office will be open from 1 until 4 p.m. Monday through Friday beginning February 3.
Tuesday, December 9, 2014 - 2:25pm
Monday, November 10, 2014 - 1:36pm
The William Carey University Theatre will present “Adventures from Aesop’s Fables,” adapted by Jeanna Graves and Deanna Graves, on December 11-12 at 7 p.m. and December 13 at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. in the Joe and Virginia Tatum Theatre.
The play takes 13 of Aesop’s 284 morality stories and presents them for children. Morals include “Honesty is the best policy,” “Don’t judge a book by its cover,” “There are two sides to every story” and “Real friends are faithful in good times and bad.”
Most members of the cast play multiple roles. Actors include Amanda Campbell of Picayune; Nadia Trinanes of Hattiesburg; Taylor Abbott of Picayune; Billy Burkes of Meridian; Branden Lindsey of Greenville, S.C.; Xavier Martin of Hattiesburg; Joey Roderick of Blue Ridge, Ga.; Rebekah Romack of Poplarville; and Ashlyn Watts of Picayune. The actors portray a variety of animal and human characters from Aesop’s tales, including The Tortoise and The Hare, The Boy Who Cried Wolf, The Grasshopper and The Ants, and The Town Mouse and The Country Mouse.
The production is entirely student designed.  “The student designers are mentored by their peers,” said O. L. Quave, director of the play and professor emeritus at WCU. “The students collaborate to bring Aesop’s world to life. The sets, masks, lights and sound create this world as if seen through a child’s eyes.”
Dewey Douglas of the theatre faculty is technical director. Douglas and Tim Matheny, chair of the Department of Theatre and Communication, are faculty mentors for students. Scenic designer is Miranda Rester of Oak Grove. The costume designer is Xavier Martin. Amanda Campbell is lighting designer and the sound designer is Taylor Abbott. Makeup designer is Rebekah Romack. The student designers are mentored by upperclassmen Billy Burkes, Joey Roderick, Chris Permenter of Oak Grove and Ashlyn Watts. Logan McCarty of Hattiesburg is rehearsal assistant. 
“Because the actors are playing multiple roles, the use of masks and other elements are important to bringing the animals to life,” said Jeanna Graves. “It’s like watching a pop-up book come to life. We want our audience, especially the children, to have their imaginations inspired.”
The box office opens Monday, December 8 and is open from 1 until 4 p.m. daily. Reservations can be made by calling 601-318-6221. Tickets are $5 each.