Play to showcase tale of Job; large set to challenge cast

02/01/08

Audiences looking for a mix of a biblical tale and a bit of clowning around will have their chance when the theater department performs its first spring play at the end of February.

Auditions were held Monday and Tuesday for the upcoming production of “J.B.,” a modernized version of the story of Job told by two vendors in a circus tent, which will be directed Assistant Professor of Theater Tom Heiman.

“I think this is actually going to be one of the more challenging shows we’ve done this year,” freshman Ali Watson said. “I’ve read the script, and I’m excited to see what Tom has in mind.”

As one of the larger shows Baker’s theater department has put on this year, many aspects of “J.B.” will be complex.

“The script is written in verse, so when you have a stylistic dialogue the audience has to do their part,” senior Hali Jewell said. “But, we’ve done shows in verse before, and it’s gone very well.”

Although it may provide somewhat of a challenge, many in the theater department are excited for a larger show.

“Our department is growing so much that a bigger show means more opportunities,” Jewell said. “There were easily over 20 people at Monday night’s auditions-old and new faces. I wouldn’t want to be Tom Heiman and have to cast everyone.”

With the interesting story that “J.B.” is sure to provide, one can only imagine what the set will be like.

“The play takes place in a circus setting,” Watson said. “The set in itself will be more challenging, and the ideas and concepts may be difficult to get the audience to understand.”

Along with Watson, freshman Philip Schiffelbein has helped backstage and with props in the past.

“I’m excited and terrified at the same time because of how big the show is,” Schiffelbein said. “I’m props master, so I’ve got a big job ahead of me, and I’m hoping to get cast as well.”

With only one production following “J.B.,” seniors involved in the theater department are dealing with their emotions as their Baker theater experience comes to an end.

“I definitely get teary-eyed when I talk about having to leave the department,” Jewell said.

“J.B.” is set to open at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 28 with three performances following that weekend.