Kennedy Center Announces Festival Plays for January

Posted on 12/14/2009 11:38:05 AM

The Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival and the IUP Department of Theater and Dance recently confirmed the productions that will participate in the KCACTF Region 2 festival to be hosted on the IUP campus, at the IUP Performing Arts Center. Five productions will be presented in Fisher Auditorium on January 13–16, 2010, and will be open to the general public. An additional four productions, open to festival registrants only, will be presented in the smaller Waller Hall mainstage.

Public Performances

Fisher Auditorium, IUP Performing Arts Center

Tickets will be available at the Performing Arts Center Grand Lobby Ticket Office only, starting two hours prior to curtain for the public ($10 each) and KCACTF registrants (included in registration fee). Those with vouchers may exchange them for tickets at the same time, starting two hours before each performance. We are sorry, but receiving tickets prior to two hours before the performance is not possible. Seating is by general admission, and printed programs will serve as your admission ticket. For more information about tickets, contact The Lively Arts at IUP, e-mail, or call 724-357-2547.

Some of these plays contain language and situations to which some audience members may object. Productions, information, and times are all subject to change. Please check this website regularly for updates.


Wednesday, January 13, 2010; 12:30 p.m.

A Comb and a Prayer Book: A Survivor’s Story
By Pamela Hendrick
Produced by Richard Stockton College of New Jersey, Pomona, N.J.
Directed by Pamela R. Hendrick
A Comb and a Prayer Book: A Survivor’s Story is based on Elizabeth Blum Goldstein’s memoir. By the age of nineteen, she had survived six concentration camps. After sixty years of silence, she opens her heart to her granddaughter Shana. What emerges is a moving and compelling chronicle of courage, endurance, and survival. What you will see is the triumph of the human spirit rising above tremendous adversity.

Thursday, January 14, 2010; 8:30 p.m.


By Samm-Art Williams
Produced by Arcadia University, Glenside, Pa.
Directed by Mark Wade
Home is the story of Cephus Miles, a young farmer in fictitious Cross Roads, N.C., who is content to work the land until his life is turned upside down by his girlfriend’s sudden departure. The play is an exploration of the true meaning of “home” and wrestles with the notion that it may be far more challenging to cut ourselves free from our roots than we realize.

Friday, January 15, 2010; 12:30 p.m.

Increased Difficulty of Concentration
By Vaclav Havel
Directed by Vanessa Lancellotti
Produced by Muhlenberg College, Allentown, Pa.
The Increased Difficulty of Concentration is a student-directed, fast-paced comedy about a sex-crazed sociologist who is the subject of a government-sponsored experiment involving artificial intelligence.

Friday, January 15, 2010; 8:30 p.m.

By Kimmika Williams-Witherspoon
Produced by Temple University, Philadelphia
Directed by Douglas C. Wager
Shot! gauges the effects of violence on residents of Beirut. In this production, “Beirut” refers to the area around Twelfth and Huntingdon streets, the back yard of Temple University’s main campus. Students portray an ensemble of interview subjects including teens, grandmothers, doctors, cops, and community organizers. (pictured at top)

Saturday, January 16, 2010; 12:30 p.m.


By Jonathan Larson
Produced by Robert Morris University, Moon Township, Pa.
Directed by Ken Gargaro
This Pulitzer Prize-winning Broadway musical is based loosely on Puccini’s opera, La Bohéme. It follows a year in the lives of seven friends living the disappearing Bohemian lifestyle in New York’s East Village.

Festival Registrant Performances

Waller Hall, IUP Performing Arts Center

These productions are open to KCACTF registrants only. Tickets for registrants will be available starting one hour before each performance on a first-come, first-served basis. Advance tickets are not available, and seating is by general admission.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010; 9:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.

Frog and Toad

A Year with Frog and Toad
By Willie and Robert Reale
Produced by Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Indiana, Pa.
Directed by Rob Gretta
This story follows two great friends—the cheerful and popular Frog and the rather grumpy Toad—through four fun-filled seasons. Waking from hibernation in the spring, they proceed to plant gardens, swim, rake leaves, and go sledding. Along the way, they learn many of life’s lessons including a very important one about friendship and rejoicing in the attributes that make each of us different and special.

Thursday, January 14, 2010; 9:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.

Miss Witherspoon
By Christopher Durang
Produced by Keuka College, Keuka Park, N.Y.
Directed by Mark Wenderlich
Miss Witherspoon is the story of middle-aged Veronica, who commits suicide, and the Christian secularists who reincarnate her. With the help of Maryamma, a young Hindu woman, a female Jesus, and a wizard suspiciously named Gandalf, Veronica must journey from here to eternity and back again to cleanse her brown tweedy aura and learn the necessity of reengaging with life.

Friday, January 15, 2010; 9:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.

Love @1stPlight
By Drew Aloe
Produced by Washington and Jefferson College, Washington, Pa.
Directed by T.S. Frank
This play centers around finding what you need even when you don’t know what it is you want. It is the tale of Spools, Rich, Flow, and Daisy all trying to get through freshman year happy, and sane. Along the way, they might learn that just being honest about—and to—themselves is sometimes the only way to achieve all of that.


Saturday, January 16, 2010; 9:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m.

By Ariel Dorfman
Produced by Alfred University, Alfred, N.Y.
Directed by Steve Crosby
Widows is a smoldering political allegory set during the dictatorship of General Pinochet in Chile. The play dramatizes, in a mythical style, the consequences of abuses to human rights under ruthless regimes.