Theatre season to wrap with “Witherspoon”

Melanie Mitchell, Senior Writer

The Fine Arts Department will conclude this year’s theatre season at Francis Marion University (FMU) with “Miss Witherspoon,” a play written by Chris Durang dealing with many topics including life after death.

Dr. Dawn Larsen, professor of theatre, who will take on the director role said this play is especially meaningful to her.

“It addresses questions of purpose of life, what happens after we die, alternative universes, reincarnation and how our actions and choices result in consequences,” Larsen said. “The [play] uses comedy to make these questions a little less threatening, but, I believe, more impactful.”

A synopsis of the play found of the Fine Arts Department website cites the main character as Veronica, a girl who is troubled by many failed relationships and finds the world a terrifying place. Veronica committed suicide and instead of ending in heaven as she expected, went to a place called Bardo. An Indian spirit guide named Maryamma works to send Veronica back to earth, so her soul can continue learning. Veronica is given the nickname “Miss Witherspoon,” by Maryamma, and eventually Veronica finds her own path and goes back to earth.

The theatre season opened in the fall with “An Evening at Provincetown,” and the winter production performance at the Performing Arts Center in the black box theatre was “Tape” written by Stephen Belber.

Larsen said that every season,  each of the theatre faculty propose up to three scripts to be discussed among the group to decide which will be most beneficial for the student body.  Larsen said the plays are chosen based on merits such as genre, period and cast size.

According to Larsen, the cast has already begun rehearsal. Larsen also warned there is strong language and adult themes.

Opening night for “Miss Witherspoon” will be on April 10 at 7:30 p.m. in the Hyman Fine Arts Center, and will run through April 12.

Ticket reservations can be made by calling 843-661-1365 between 12:00 and 5:00 p.m.