Theater department prepares for fall production of ‘The Hatmaker’s Wife’

Presley DePugh, Contributing Writer

The university’s fall production of “The Hatmaker’s Wife” is underway as the theater department held auditions for their upcoming show on Sept. 12 in Bucknall Theater. Three days later, the first table read took place and the enthusiasm and effort of the cast could be felt through their powerful performances.

“The Hatmaker’s Wife” by Lauren Yee follows the main protagonist, Voice, who moves into a house with her boyfriend and soon begins to hear the walls talking to her.

Margaret Savilonis, associate professor and theater program director, said the university’s theater department has not yet done a play written by Lauren Yee, a famous Asian-American playwright.

Savilonis said, “We also like the story. It’s funny but it’s also, obviously, very touching and is a lot about human connection.” She said that we are still recovering from the impact that COVID-19 had on the world and the university. This play will show the audience a story about love and connection “in a time when we’ve been missing that.”

Despite the event being an informal table read, the cast made sure to put their heart and soul into the performance.

Angelina Paulus, a first-year criminal justice ​​student, who plays Voice, is no stranger to stage life. “I’ve been doing theater for about 10 years of my life. I can’t really remember a time when I was not involved in theater in some capacity.” Paulus says she’s passionate about being onstage, which shines through as she reads her lines.

Every cast member was excited to start the show and delve more into their characters. . Nialah McCalla, a first-year student studying music who plays the silent Golem, says “I’m just really excited to get more experience in theater because it’s definitely something I want to do when I leave here.” McCalla says she is looking forward to making more friends and participating in the university’s theater club.
Ian Sacci, a junior sports management major, is not only playing Voice’s “rigid” boyfriend Gabe in the play but is also an active member of the Theater Club as the vice president. He said, “We play theater games; we get people from the industry coming in.”

Last year in the production of “Head over Heels,” Sacci played Dametas, the viceroy to King Basilius. Sacci’s experience being on stage was seen as he put all his best effort into getting to know his character Gabe during this table read.

The upcoming fall production will have a lot of effort put into it, as Savilonis says, “We will be rehearsing three to four times a week.”

Alexa Manniccia, a freshman communications major and stage manager, said, ”It will be a lot of work…but I think I’m prepared for it.”

Make sure to set your calendar to Nov. 16 for the first performance of “The Hatmaker’s Wife.” If you have any interest in theater, head to the Theater Club’s Charger Connection page to see a list of the upcoming events they are holding for the fall semester.