By Roslin Ojeda
“The Accrington Pals,” written by Peter Whelan in 1981 abd based on a battalion during World War I, will be showcased by the Theater Department.
The battalion was also from the town of Accrington which is located in Lancashire, England.
The play will be directed by Kelly Hogan, who is an Intro to Theater professor and has directed other plays on campus.
Hogan said the reason she picked the play was because the women are the central figures, which is not often seen in theater. She said what fascinated her most was that it is interpreted from the perspective of women when most plays about war are all about the men.
The play not only focuses on the men at the front lines of WWI, but on the women they left behind as well. It explores their relationships as the war carries on and how the women had to adjust to life without husbands, fathers, or brothers around.
Hogan also want to commemorate the 100-year anniversary of the war. The play deals with issues such as fake news, propaganda and inequality toward women. Hogan said she thought it was import for her students to learn how to act with accents which is something they will have to do as professionals.“ The accents, I think, are going to be a challenge for the audience at times to understand everything.
Once you get used to the accents then it gets easier to follow along,” Hogan said. She will be having the actors speak a bit slower during the first scene so the audience can get used to the accents.
“I think people will get caught up in the truth of the young characters. “The love stories are very much something that college students can identify with because they are all people like them,” Hogan said.
She said she hopes the audience gains food for thought when leaving the play. Hogan said the play is sprinkled with humor that she hopes helps keep the audience interested throughout the play. ”It is still a drama. It looks at a serious subject in a serious way,” Hogan said.
It is the only drama the theater department will be doing this year. The actors have been rehearsing since January, putting in 20 to 30 hours of rehearsal a week. The play will run April 14 and 15 and 20-22 in the Black Box Theater.
Night performances begin at 8 p.m. Matinee showtimes on April 15, 22 and 23 will begin at 2pm. It runs for approximately 120 minutes with a 20 minute intermission. Due to Easter Sunday, there will be a special performance Thursday April 20. This is the first time the department has put on a performance on a Thursday. Tickets are $8 with ASU discount, $10 presale and $12 at the door. They can also be purchased P2-101A and at elac.edu under the Events tab.