The Last Days of Judas Iscariot

THE LAST DAYS OF JUDAS ISCARIOT is a comic, irreverent attempt to make a judgement on the soul of the world’s most renowned sinner.  Judas Iscariot betrayed Christ and Stephen Adly-Guirgis wonders what would his trial in purgatory be like (if told by a comedian).  While it is often snide and funny, it offers deeper moments of heart wrenching questions about Judas, despair, and forgiveness.     Set in a time-bending, darkly comic world between heaven and hell, THE LAST DAYS OF JUDAS ISCARIOT reexamines the plight and fate of the New Testament’s most infamous and unexplained sinner. DUE TO CONTENT AND LANGUAGE, THIS PRODUCTION IS NOT SUITABLE FOR ALL AUDIENCES   PRODUCTION DATES: November 13, 14, 15, 20, 21, 22 at 7:30pm November 16 and 23 at 3:00pm To purchase tickets online (at a discount) visit wlujudas.brownpapertickets.com or call 304.336.8277 to make a reservation. “THE LAST DAYS OF JUDAS ISCARIOT shares many of the traits that have made Mr. Guirgis a playwright to reckon with in recent years; a fierce and questing mind that refuses to settle for glib answers, a gift for identifying with life’s losers and an unforced eloquence that finds the poetry in lowdown street talk…Mr. Guirgis is a zealous and empathic researcher, and he presents dilemmas of ancient Galilee in terms winningly accessible to the twenty-first century…” —NY Times. “Stephen Adly Guirgis has written a real jaw-dropper…expressionistic fantasy…raw language and flamboyantly street-savvy characters…his imagination is dazzling and his command of language downright thrilling.” —Variety. “…one of the most passionate and powerful young playwrights to have come down the theatrical runway…a must for anyone interested in the...

Tony Award Winning Play “Spring Awakening” comes to the Hill!!!

SPRING AWAKENING   By Steven Sater and Duncan Sheik Winner of 8 Tony Awards® Including BEST MUSICAL MAKES ITS NORTHERN PANHANDLE PREMIERE  NOVEMBER 20-21 AND 23-24, 2013 TICKETS ARE ON SALE NOW! “An unexpected jolt of sudden genius!” -Clive Barnes, New York Post SPRING AWAKENING, one of Broadway’s most popular new musical and the biggest Tony Award®-winner in years, is coming to this region. SPRING AWAKENING, the 8-time Tony Award® winning Broadway musical, will play the Kelly Theatre November 20-21 and 23-24, 2013 (there is no performance on November 22 due to the Wheeling Christmas Parade) as part of the WLU Hilltop Player’s 2013-2014 season. Tickets are on sale now and may be purchased at the WLU Ticket Office (limited hours) or online at htpawakening.brownpapertickets.com.  Reservations can be made by calling 1-304-336-8277. SPRING AWAKENING swept the 2007 Tony Awards® winning eight out of its eleven nominations, including Best Musical, Best Director (Michael Mayer), Best Book (Steven Sater), Best Choreography (Bill T. Jones), Best Orchestrations (Duncan Sheik), Best Lighting Design (Kevin Adams), Best Featured Actor (John Gallagher Jr.). Based on the infamous 1891 Frank Wedekind play, SPRING AWAKENING features an electrifying score by Duncan Sheik, book and lyrics Steven Sater, direction by Michael Mayer and choreography by the award-winning Bill T. Jones. Set against the backdrop of a repressive and provincial late 19th century Germany, SPRING AWAKENING tells the timeless story of teenage self-discovery and budding sexuality as seen through the eyes of three teenagers. Haunting and provocative, SPRING AWAKENING celebrates an unforgettable journey from youth to adulthood with a power, a poignancy and a passion you will never forget....

WLU Students Excel at Region II KCACTF

[article from The Trumpet online] By Hannah Courtney, Assistant Editor While the majority of West Liberty University’s students were still rubbing the sleep from their eyes, dusting off their backpacks and trying to slap themselves awake, 16 WLU students were competing among various other student actors in the region for a chance at the Irene Ryan Scholarship. According to Kennedy-center.org, the Irene Ryan Foundation is an Encino, Calif. based scholarship opportunity for student performers at each of the regionalKennedy Center American College Theater Festivals (KCACTF). The scholarship descends from the late Irene Ryan, best remembered for her portrayal of gun toting, firecracker Granny Clampett in “The Beverly Hillbillies.” KCACTF is a national theater program that aims to improve the quality of college theater in the United States by running state, regional, and national festivals. “It’s basically like this theater wonderland. There’s workshops to go to, shows to see and great contacts you can make. And you get to make a whole bunch of new friends. It’s just kind of like rejuvenating yourself in theater or learning stuff that you’ve never known about. And it’s not just for actors, but as well as scene designers and a whole bunch of technical theater people,” said Cassie Hackbart, WLU student actor. The competition took place from Jan. 12 until Jan. 16 at Towson University in Maryland. For Hackbart in particular, it was a three-step process. In the preliminary round, she and acting partner Greg Gust performed a scene from Tony Kushner’s “Angels in America.” In the semi-finals, this scene was performed again along with a scene from Martin McDonagh’s “The Cripple of Inishmaan.” Finally,...

“The Crucible” Comes to the Hill

The WLU Hilltop Players proudly bring Arthur Miller’s classic “The Crucible” to the stage.  Boasting a cast of talented students the Hilltop Players will delight audiences with this production. The Crucible By Arthur Miller Arthur Miller may be best know for Death of a Salesman, but some claim that there is no greater tragic protagonist than John Proctor.  This play focuses upon the effects of his affair with a young servant-girl on his family and community. The girl, Abigail Williams, maliciously accuses his wife of witchcraft causing her arrest and the destruction of a town. Proctor finally brings the girl to court to admit the lie—and it is here that the monstrous course of bigotry and deceit is terrifyingly depicted. The farmer, instead of saving his wife, finds himself also accused of witchcraft and ultimately condemned with a host of others. Winner of the 1953 Tony Award for Best Play. This exciting drama about the Puritan purge of witchcraft in old Salem is both a gripping historical play and a timely parable of our contemporary society. “A powerful drama.” —NY Times. PRODUCTION DATES October 18-19; 25-27 at 7:30pm October 28 at 3:00pm Click Tickets to purchase tickets online.  To make a reservation, call 304.336.8277....

Enjoy A Musical Comedy Murder at the Kelly August 30-September 2

POSTED:  Aug. 23, 2012 – West Liberty University will open its theater season with a reprise of last spring’s production, “The Musical Comedy Murders of 1940,” this time with a mostly-alumni cast. Curtain is at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, Friday and Saturday, Aug. 30 – Sept. 1 and 3 p.m., Sunday, Sept. 2 at Kelly Theatre and all performances are open to the public. Adjunct professor of theater John Hennen ’70 is the director of the comedy that promises to be a comic romp. Written by John Bishop, the play pokes fun at the more ridiculous aspects of “show biz” and the corny thrillers of Hollywood’s heyday, as the cast untangles the mystery of the “Stage Door Slasher.” Cast includes: faculty members Michael Aulick, Linda Cowan, and Melinda Kreisberg; current students Matt Dougherty and Kevin Hensley; alumni, Joshua Fromhart ‘04, Judith Hennen ‘73, Karissa Martin ’12, Melody Meadows ’91 and Gretchen Schneider ‘08. As the play opens, the creative team responsible for a recent Broadway flop (in which three chorus girls were murdered by the “Stage Door Slasher”) assembles for a backer’s audition at the estate of a wealthy “angel.” The house is replete with sliding panels, secret passageways and a German maid who is apparently four different people (all diabolical). The infamous “Slasher” makes his reappearance and strikes again—and again. General admissions tickets are $10; students with I.D.s are $5. For reservations, please call the Hilltop Players box office at 304.336.8277....

NYC Theatrical Experience Adds Work Skills to WLU Theatre Education

West Liberty University took its show on the road this summer as Professor Michael Aulick and student Spencer Thomas were involved in the new musical, “Wh@If,” staged in New York City this July. “This was the chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to direct a play at the Midtown International Theater Festival was unbelievable,” said Aulick, who has been with West Liberty for three years. Written by Wheeling playwright Jeremy Richter, the show revolves around a character named Jared Finn. Much of the action takes place in Jared’s head as he ponders what is happening behind the door of his fiancee’s home when he hears another man’s voice. “This is my first experience directing a New York production and it has allowed Spencer to get his first New York credit on his resume before he turned 23.  It was a huge element to add to his professional resume! He’s my first student in 15 years of teaching to get NYC experience while still a student,” added Aulick, who teaches acting and directing, as well as some of the theatre’s theory and criticism classes. A resident of Weirton, W.Va., Thomas is in his junior year at WLU and is a theater major. He was the sound and light designer for the musical and enjoyed the experience tremendously. “I learned things by doing that I couldn’t have learned in the classroom or working on school shows. The New York experience helped me to see how things work professionally. It was an invaluable experience,” he said. “Because it was a new show it was hard work but the audience seemed to enjoy...