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April 03, 2017 : OUC Theater Program brings “Ghosts” to life in spring production

OUC Theater Program brings “Ghosts” to life in spring production


The Ohio University Chillicothe Theater program will present their spring production of “Ghosts” by Henrik Ibsen April 6 through 8 at 8 p.m. in Bennett Hall Auditorium.


A dinner theater event will take place on Friday, April 7 prior to the show, which includes dinner, admission to the show and after dinner remarks by Dr. Ken Breidenbaugh. Proceeds from the event contribute to the Jayne Stone Brown theater scholarship which is awarded to a theater student each year.


“Ghosts” by Henrik Ibsen, introduces the audience to Helen Alving, her son Oswald and their long-held family secrets that seem to continuously haunt them. The play, regarded as a canonical piece, is accepted as an important and influential work in Western culture.


“It’s a significant text for the actors to be able to deal with,” said Lance Mekeel, OUC theater program director. “I’m proud to be able to let them have the opportunity to work on such a canonical play and get exposure to this important work.”


This production will feature five prominent roles depicted by current and former OUC students who will portray Helen Alving, Oswald Alving, Regina Engstrand, Jacob Engstrand and Pastor Manders to bring this story to life.


Mekeel said he chose “Ghosts” to continue the theme of culture and memory that has celebrated the school’s 70th anniversary this academic year.


“This play gives the ability to reflect on one’s past and how we are bringing that past with us or denying it,” he said. “So, it’s a way of dealing more broadly with what we’ve been specifying in terms of the university, the campus and the region talking more broadly about that theme of how we deal with our past.”


The play has been in the works since the end of last year’s spring production. Students have been working on building the set, preparing for the production and rehearsing since the beginning of the semester.


The collective effort of the entire cast, crew and the volunteers help to bring the words to life, even if all the participating students are non-theater majors.


For these productions, Mekeel works from beginning to end to introduce all aspects of theater to his students.  


“I am a theater generalists, so I get great joy out of participating in all those roles,” he said. “Being able to share with these students the knowledge of not only, ‘here is a beat and here is an action you play on a stage as an actor,’ but to be able to say, ‘here’s how we build a flat for a wall’ or, ‘here’s how we focus a light on a stage.’  I take great joy being able to share that with them.”


A talk back with the cast will be held following the show’s closing on Friday night with guest moderator Dr. Tony Vinci, an assistant professor of English at OUC.


Tickets will be available at the door for $5 for general admission, $3 for faculty and staff and free for students.


For more information on the dinner theater event, contact Joyce Atwood at 740.710.7732.