The University of Connecticut’s theater production group Page to Stage may only be two years old, but it has its sights set on expansion and is well-loved by its members
Page to Stage produced multiple performances over the past year, running the comedic musical “Urinetown” in the fall semester and, more recently, “Our Town” for the spring semester. The group also participated in “The Vagina Monologues” in February.
Founded by Lucia Greene, a sixth-semester Spanish and journalism major, Page to Stage aims to help students find their passion through acting and theatre production.
“We wanted to open up some opportunities on campus,” said Greene. “We liked the idea of creating more shows for the campus and branching out to the community.”
Page to Stage is highly student driven-one of their first shows, “How to Be a Villain,” was written by a group member.
The group is open to all majors and levels of experience. Several freshmen were involved in “Our Town” and the play was directed by second-semester student Justin Jager.
“Directing a show…It’s such a radical transition,” said Jager. “It didn’t just help me transition [tocollege], it helped me get myself out there.”
The group is very tight knit-and working on productions together has helped the members bond.
“We’re all basically a big family,” said second-semester English major Lydia Bailey, who played Emily in “Our Town” this spring. “It’s the perfect balance of being total idiots and being able to get stuff done. We create a club that makes a legacy to last.”
“It’s different than in high school,” said Rosella Aliva, a second-semester political science major. “[Back then], you were just an actor. Here, you have to do everything: get the costumes, make the sets, deal with the PR. It’s very self sufficient.”
“When I first came here, I went home most weekends,” Alvia added. “Now, I’m here most of the time. It really helped me transition.”
“In theater, you’re so vulnerable,” said Bailey. “Here, you have people accept you for who you are.”
Acting can also help establish a human connection in multiple careers.
“I’m able to relate to my patients better in clinicals,” says member Monia Gieger, an eighth-semester nursing major. “It helps me release stress from the day, as well.”
Each production year for Page to Stage begins with auditions for the semester’s production. Rehearsals are held on Mondays, Wednesday and Sundays, with general meetings held on Thursday evenings.
After the show’s run at the end of the semester, members pitch a show idea to the executive board of the group, which the club then decides on through voting.
This year, the two shows pitched were the 1970s musical “Company” and the cult classic stage production version of “Rocky Horror Picture Show.”
Pitches are based on cast sizes and voice range, the royalty, costume and set costs and logistics and the storyline and characters in the show.
Next semester, based on the votes, Page to Stage will produce “Rocky Horror Picture Show,” to be directed by fourth-semester neurobiology major Julia Hersum, who also wrote the play “How to Be a Villain.”
“One of the reasons I chose Rocky Horror is because it promotes positive body imaging,” said Hersum. “That and we get to dance ‘The Time Warp.’”
Page to Stage plans to expand their repertoire and focus on more social issues, as well as more traditional stage productions.
“With ‘The Vagina Monologues, we liked having an open discussion about women’s issues,” said Geiger. “We’d like to expand it and use our productions to engage in conversations about social issues.”
Marlese Lessing is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at email@example.com.