In July, the Fairmont State University Town & Gown Summer Theatre will present the popular musical “South Pacific,” with music by Richard Rodgers and lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II.
Continuing the longstanding tradition of high quality outdoor theatre performances at Prickett’s Fort State Park, Town & Gown Summer Theatre will honor veterans and members of the U.S. Armed Forces with special ticket prices and special recognition at each performance.
“Town & Gown Summer Theatre is an important educational, as well as entertaining, endeavor. The School of Fine Arts hires students from Fairmont State and other colleges and high school interns, and all learn to work as a team to bring about a successful production,” said Peter Lach, Dean of the School of Fine Arts. “Part of the University’s mission is to strengthen the educational, economic and cultural well-being of our region. The School of Fine Arts is proud to partner with Prickett’s Fort State Park to provide outdoor theatre for North Central West Virginia. We also are proud to salute our nation’s veterans through this summer’s production.”
Performances will be at 8 p.m. on July 6, 7, 8, 12, 13 and 14 at the Prickett’s Fort Amphiteatre. Tickets are $14 for general admission and $12 for veterans and members of the Armed Forces and their family members. Tickets are available from the Box Office by calling (304) 367-4240. For more information, visit www.fairmontstate.edu/tickets.
“I always look forward to directing productions at Prickett’s Fort because the community is so involved and enthusiastic--from those in the audience to those in the production. We appreciate the loyalty and support of the community,” said Director Jeffrey Ingman, a faculty member in the FSU School of Fine Arts.
Set in an island paradise during World War II, “South Pacific” tells two parallel stories of love threatened by prejudice and war. Nellie, a spunky nurse from Arkansas, falls in love with a mature French planter, Emile. She learns that the mother of his children was an island native and, unable to turn her back on the prejudices with which she was raised, refuses Emile’s proposal of marriage. Meanwhile, the strapping Lt. Joe Cable denies himself the fulfillment of a future with the same fears that haunt Nellie. When Emile is recruited to accompany Joe on a dangerous mission that claims Joe’s life, Nellie realizes that life is too short not to seize her own chance for happiness and conquers her prejudices.
A cast of 30 makes up the ensemble for “South Pacific.” Leigh Anne Bolyard of Fairmont plays Nellie Forbush, and FSU theatre faculty member John O’Connor plays Emile De Becque. Emile’s daughter Ngana is played by Sydney King of Fairmont, and his son, Jerome is Tyler Giorcelli, also of Fairmont. Bloody Mary is portrayed by Christie Brooks of Fairmont, and her daughter, Liat, is played by Madison Whiting of Fairmont. Troy Snyder, another FSU faculty member, will be Luther Billis, and Zach Rowe of Morgantown will be Lt. Joseph Cable. Fairmont Senior High School faculty member, Shawn Dunn will be Capt. George Brackett, and FSU faculty member James Matthews will be Commander William Harbison.
The large ensemble of sailors, nurses, Seabees and ensigns includes Walter Cyphers of Talladega, Ala.; Sasha Bohon of Fairmont; Clayton Dunn of Fairmont; and Sami Dull of Shenandoah Junction. Also from Fairmont are Johnathan Derrick Gibson, Jennifer Scholtz, Stephan Phillips, Christopher Yost, Shannon Yost and Kate Thompson. Also in the ensemble are Tyler Kovar of Farmington; Jay Lindsay of Morgantown; Brandon Lee of Anchorage, Alaska; Lillian Gaylord of Martinsburg; Eliza Huff of Shenandoah Junction; Teresa Parlett of Williamstown; Ashley Spedding of Morgantown; Katherine Walch of Morgantown; and Shae Strait of Shinnston.