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Fall Showcase brings student productions to Sullivan Theatre

October 17, 2018

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Jack Aschenbach (L) and Amanda LoCoco (R) embrace in “Talk To Me Like The Rain and Let Me Listen”

Jack Aschenbach (L) and Amanda LoCoco (R) embrace in “Talk To Me Like The Rain and Let Me Listen”

Courtesy of Stratton McCrady

Courtesy of Stratton McCrady

Jack Aschenbach (L) and Amanda LoCoco (R) embrace in “Talk To Me Like The Rain and Let Me Listen”

This past weekend the Suffolk University Theater Department presented its annual Fall Showcase, a collection of one-act plays written and directed by students to celebrate their creativity and talent. The plays touched on current events, culture, distress and death.

The showcase featured three plays: “Talk to Me Like the Rain and Let Me Listen” written by famous playwright Tennessee Williams and directed by Micaleen Rodgers ’20 and Amanda LoCoco ‘19; “Paciencia” written and directed by Adriana Alvarez ‘19; and “wild, alone” written and directed by Ali Maynard ‘19.

The showcase opened with “Talk to Me Like the Rain and Let Me Listen,” and set a melancholy tone for the audience. The play featured actors Jack Aschenbach and LoCoco as they navigate a strained relationship, isolated in one room. The characters portray William’s perspective on loneliness and despair. With a simple set design and the echoing of rain in the background, Rodgers and LoCoco were challenged to bring Williams’s work to life.

Rodgers found that interpreting Williams’s work was “fun to be able to pick apart what stands out to [her] in 2018 for what the piece is trying to say.” It was also important for LoCoco to choose the right piece because it was her senior capstone project and she wanted to make sure that she was “connected to the female character.” LoCoco, a senior theatre major, chose this concept to challenge herself in designing this performance.

The second play was Alvarez’s “Paciencia,” which translated from Spanish means “patience.”  The play tackled a Latin American family’s struggle with immigration to the United States, confronting issues with citizenship and deportation.

The play featured multiple families celebrating special moments such as the birth of a child and attending college while also living in fear of deportation.

Being a child of an immigrant herself, Alvarez wanted to elaborate on her story in an artistic way to “give a voice to the Latino community.” For her, naming the play “Paciencia” represents the hope these families have.

This was the first piece she had ever written, and she wanted to address immigration in a peaceful way as opposed to an aggressive demonstration.

“The show is about love and the patience of wanting to wait for citizenship,” said Alvarez.

She wanted the audience to focus on the stories of the people rather than the categorization of them as immigrants. “The biggest thing is humanizing the people that you are seeing in the media,” said Alvarez.

“Thinking about them as a person, a part of a regular family, that’s what’s key.”

The last play was Maynard’s “wild, alone” which dove into a depiction of life after death. Using humor, Maynard portrayed a serial killer’s soul in pursuit of an afterlife residency. He is burdened by how souls live after death and must decide where he will spend eternity. Audiences saw famous New England ghosts, such as Lizzie Borden and Mercy Brown, help reveal the killer’s true fate by the end of the show. For a morbid subject, the play expanded on a thrilling, alternate perception.

Rodgers anticipates to submit another original piece for the Spring Showcase with stage manager Ma’chel Martin. Alvarez is hoping to branch out to other story ideas in the future.

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