Arts at ASU to Present ‘Cuckoo’s Nest’
April 07, 2011
Dr. Chris Collins and Dr. Jake Simmons, professors in ASU’s Communication, Mass Media and Theatre Department, will direct the stage production. Performances will begin at 8 p.m. on April 21-23 and April 28-30, with a Sunday matinee performance on April 24 starting at 2 p.m. Doors open 15 minutes before each performance. Some language and situations in the play may not be suitable for children.
Tickets are $3 for ASU students, $4 for non-ASU students and $8 general admission. Arts at ASU subscribers and ASU activity card holders will be admitted free. The Modular Theatre is located in the Carr Education-Fine Arts Building, 2602 Dena Drive.
The play revolves around protagonist Randal P. McMurphy, a charming rogue who mistakenly thinks that a mental institution is preferable to prison. He quickly clashes with the tyrannical head nurse, Mildred Ratched.
As a patient, McMurphy is the architect of such shenanigans as staging a revolt to watch the World Series on television and throwing a rollicking midnight party with liquor and women. Ratched tries shock treatment on him for one offense, and when he attacks her in a rage, she resorts to a final, more permanent correction.
“Our initial question for this show was derived from the character Chief Bromden’s vision of the psychiatric facility as ‘black machine,’” Collins and Simmons said. “The institution must, as the cliché goes, ‘function like a well-oiled machine.’ So, as directors, our vision was to bring this abundant metaphor to life throughout the direction and design of this machine metaphor on the theatrical stage. We ask, as the author of the novel Ken Kesey did. ‘What happens when the machine short-circuits?’”
ASU student actors include Dorian Serna as McMurphy and Molly Schwencke as Ratched. Also, George Pacheco Jr. as Chief Bromden, Ty Matlock as Dale Harding, Brent Davidson as Billy Bibbit, Marshall Van Pelt as Scanlon, LeRoyal Tutt as Cheswick, Bernardino “Chito” Hernandez as Martini, Michael “Pugs” Loftis as Ruckley, Joe Zimmerman as Aide Williams, Jacob Scott as Dr. Spivey, Katie Hejl as Nurse Flinn, Brian Carter as Aide Turtle, Amber Horton as Candy Starr and Felicia Villarreal as Sandra.
Eldra Sanford is the University Theatre’s costumer and Matt Smith is the University Theatre’s technical director. Student assistants for this production are Laurie Proveau, stage manager; Janna Pinson, assistant stage manager/assistant electrician; Tristan Sanders, front of house manager; Travis Taylor, assistant props master; Ian Stanton and Brandon Jones, assistant electricians/assistant carpenters; Martin Rodriguez, master electrician/assistant carpenter; Teresa Smith, master carpenter; Samantha Sandifer, wardrobe manager; Amber Horton, assistant wardrobe manager; and Lance Turner, box office manager.
The ASU box office opens on Thursday, April 7, to subscribers and Monday, April 11, to the general public. Call 942-2000 weekdays from 2-6 p.m. for reservations. For more information about the production, call the ASU drama program at 942-2146.