Start Columbus Day weekend off with a compelling drama about two people meeting for the first time since a high school romance gone very sour when the University of Maine at Presque Isle’s University Players theater club present an original play, Infinitely Yours, written by a UMPI student. This play will feature performances by four professional New York City actors and will show in the Auditorium at Wieden Hall on Friday, Oct. 9, and Saturday, Oct. 10, at 7 p.m. A $5 suggested donation will be accepted at the door. All proceeds will go to Hope and Justice Project to help with domestic violence awareness.
Infinitely Yours is an original play penned by UMPI student and University Players President Darci Faye. The play follows Emily and Jason as they meet again for the first time since high school. The story then examines the ripples and waves one fateful meeting can have in a person’s life.
The actors in this play are all seasoned actors from New York City. Jody Christopherson is an actor, writer and activist who will be one of the four actors participating in the play. Christopherson strives to support upcoming female playwrights to give them the exposure and experience they need. She also believes that it is important to see and talk about issues like domestic violence and the cycle of violence for both men and women.
“Darci’s play is a fantastic example of a national conversation we need to be having about domestic violence—it doesn’t discriminate based on age, place, race, socio-economic status or education,” Christopherson said.
Another cast member, Claire Kennedy, is equally excited to be part of this project. Kennedy first met Faye two years ago when Faye was doing one of her first readings of Infinitely Yours. Since then, Kennedy has participated in some of the readings and has been “along for the ride” on the long road to getting the first live performance on stage.
“The themes and story in this play, are not ones we often hear and see on our theatrical stages. I’m drawn to how important it is to be sharing and telling those stories, to be bringing this subject into conscious dialogue,” Kennedy said.
Kennedy and Christopherson will be joined on stage by Aaron Vega and Mat Leonard for this four-person show.
As October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, Faye hopes her play will help to start a conversation about this issue and proceeds from the play will benefit Hope and Justice Project.
“We acted as consultants on this project to incorporate the work we do daily with victims within the play in order to help make it authentic and something that survivors and their families can connect with,” Casey Faulkingham, prevention coordinator for Hope and Justice Project, said.
Additionally, this play will provide the University Players with a unique experience: “The University Players is sponsoring and producing this event. You won’t see any University Players actors onstage, but they will be helping out backstage. Everyone is excited for the chance to get to know these four professional actors, and to learn and grow from them. The University Players will be watching some rehearsals, and be given the chance to pick the professional actor’s brains over dinner one night,” Faye said.
Infinitely Yours contains scenes of violence that some people may find to be triggering. There will be advocates from Hope and Justice Project on hand if survivors in the room find that they need someone to talk to during the production.
The University Players was re-formed last year and works to provide students—and, in some cases, community thespians as well—with a way to express themselves through various theatre forms, such as plays, musicals, and festivals. Later this semester, the theater club plans to present the Off-Broadway hit comedy, Beyond Therapy, on Nov. 7-8. To learn more about the University Players, visit the website at http://wp.umpi.edu/universityplayers/ or find its Facebook page by searching for “University Players at UMPI”.
Faye said the Players hope to welcome many campus and community members to the Oct. 9 and 10 performances of Infinitely Yours. For more information, please contact Faye at firstname.lastname@example.org.