By Nancy Bowne
The coffee shop was filled with dangling light bulbs, engaging stories and impressive improvisation.
All College Theatre presented “Love & Information,” a modern play written by Caryl Churchill, from Feb. 26 to 29. The experimental play takes place over the duration of 50 short scenes that explore topics such as breakups, traveling, pain and even magical stones. The 12-person cast represented multiple different characters and perspectives throughout the one-act play.
“This was the perfect play for ACT,” said Direct Curt Foxworth ’02. “A year ago, I picked this play to present to the ACT membership board.”
Foxworth also shared that what sets this script apart is that it “doesn’t give you a location, names, or even some scenes.” While the show takes on the spirit of improv, Foxworth explained that “it is more about making offers” and creating new ideas.
The play begins with the cast ad libbing and perusing around the stage. But by the last scene, the rag tag cast of strangers becomes closer, becoming invested in every line.
“The ensemble is just as much a part of the show when they aren’t speaking,” Foxworth said.
The coffee shop was a platform that welcomed ideas, fears, comments and proclamations of love and information. A word from each scene was written on the chalkboard on stage, such as “wedding video” and “decision censor.” The cast did a spectacular job of transitioning from scene to scene, cascading into a general rhythm of humor to chaos and melancholy to hope.
“This show was literal genius,” said Dylan Sepulveda, a junior English major and actor in the production. “The script could be random and abstract, just leaving a title of the scene to fill in its storyline. But then some parts were placed in order.”
Stephanie Sonbati, a junior English and communications studies double major and actor in the production, echoed Sepulveda’s words.
“The production is never the same, any place that you go and see it presented,” Sonbati said. “There were tons of rehearsals full of just transitions from each small scene.”
Behind the scenes, “Love & Information” continued to extend its message through strategic planning and leadership.
Gina Mancuso, a sophomore English and secondary education dual major and an assistant production manager of the play, appreciated the show’s eclectic format.
“It’s been a lot of fun,” Mancuso said. “The cast has been amazing. Production has been very smooth, too.”
Putting together this production was no simple feat. Jonathan Vogel, a sophomore chemistry and secondary education dual major, who served as a lead lighting designer, explained how the scene with morse code through the lamps “literally took three days.”
“I crafted 300 cues together on a spreadsheet,” Vogel said. “It was super rewarding to see the finished product.”