Published Sept. 26, 2013
Springfield, Ohio — The students are back on campus, the sports teams are competing, and the theater buffs are already rehearsing for Wittenberg’s first mainstage production, Six Degrees of Separation, written by John Guare. The production starts at 7:30 p.m. Thursday-Saturday, Oct. 10-12, and at 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 13, in Chakeres Memorial Theatre, 905 Woodlawn Ave.
Directed by Professor Emeritus of Theatre and Dance Steven Reynolds, Six Degrees of Separation, is a comedy/drama based on a true story and the theory that everyone in the world is linked by a chain of no more than six people.
The story, set in New York City in the 1990s, follows a young African American man, Paul, who charms his way into the lives of rich upper-class Caucasians by making them believe that he is the son of famed actor Sidney Poitier.
Performers include Sarah Van Deusen, class of 2016 from Chattanooga, Tenn., as Ouisa; Carl Burgason, class of 2016 from Hilliard, Ohio, as Flan; Bobby Kirwin, class of 2015 from Strongsville, Ohio, as Geoffrey; Aaron B. Glen, class of 2014 from Chicago, Ill., as Paul; Sage Hazarika, class of 2014 from Brooklyn, N.Y., as the hustler; Katie Paolacci, class of 2016 from Granville, Ohio, as Kitty; Kreig Spahn, class of 2015 from Cochranto, Pa., as Larkin; Haley Justice, class of 2015 from Springfield, Ohio, as the detective; Annie Page, class of 2016 from Loveland, Ohio, as Tess; Nick Pashoian, class of 2017 from Great Falls, Va., as Woody; Christian Babyak, class of 2017 from Nemacolin, Pa., as Ben; Corey Ragan, class of 2015 from Columbus, as Dr. Fine; Will Gundlach, class of 2015 from Boise, Idaho, as Doug; Jasmine Jones, class of 2015 from Fairdale, Ky., as the policewoman; Bobby Reynolds, class of 2014 from Gahanna, Ohio, as the doorman; Robby Thrall, class of 2014 from Strongsville, Ohio, as Trent; Dylan George, class of 2015 from Dublin, Ohio, as Rick; and Moriah Cunning, class of 2014 from Toledo, Ohio, as Elizabeth. Campbell Eccles, class of 2015 from Roanoke, Ind., is serving as the stage manager.
“This show is so different from anything Wittenberg has ever seen,” Paolacci said.
Van Deusen added, “Six Degrees explores issues related to race, class structure, and social responsibility. I am grateful of the opportunity to sink my teeth into this material every night, and the cast is happy to have Steven Reynolds and his great direction back!”
Reynolds joined the Wittenberg faculty in 1981 and retired in 2012. His honors include the Alumni Association’s Distinguished Teaching Award, the Omicron Delta Kappa Award for Excellence in Teaching and the Matthies Research Award. Reynolds also received a Kennedy Center Gold Medallion Award from Region III for “extraordinary contributions to the teaching and producing of theatre and to the development of KCACTF.” He holds a B.A. from Tufts University and an M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Michigan.
Tickets cost $5 each – Wittenberg students receive one free ticket by presenting their ID card. Tickets go on sale at the Benham-Pence Student Center service desk, 937-327-7443, on Sept. 30 and are available at the Chakeres Memorial Theatre box office one hour prior to each performance.
Writing and Photos by: Kelsey Claar ‘15