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CMU Theatre faculty present digital performance of "Art"

As theatres around the globe respond and adapt to current circumstances and the restrictions imposed by the necessity for social distancing, CMU theatre is one of many that has had to cancel the remainder of its 2019-20 season. However, three theatre faculty members have found themselves in the unique position of being free to collaborate on a new project. Instructor of Music Theatre Jeremy R. Franklin, Head of the Department of Theatre Arts Mo LaMee and Assistant Professor of Acting and Directing Benjamin Reigel will produce a socially distanced, “staged” reading of Art by Yasmina Reza for a digital audience Friday, April 24.

“The three of us have been talking about doing this play for a couple years now, but our busy production schedules have kept us from it,” said Franklin. “As the pandemic led to theatres canceling productions, one-by-one our schedules freed up for the first time. We've found ourselves excited to be working in what for us is uncharted territory.” 

Adjunct professor Jessica Jackson will direct the performance, Assistant Professor of Scenic Design Matthew Schlief will act as sound, art and video producer, and Doug Morrow will provide live music.

CMU theatre is also proud to have this opportunity to partner with the Art Center to raise proceeds for the organization during this difficult time. All ticket proceeds will benefit the Art Center.

"The Art Center is thrilled with this partnership and is so grateful to Mo, Jeremy and Ben for donating their time and talents to help raise funds to support The Art Center,” said Lee Borden, executive director of the Art Center. “The Art Center and CMU have enjoyed a decades-old friendship with many partnerships over the years, and it's wonderful to, once again, be working together to bring the arts to the valley." 

The play is Art, a comedy that follows the friendship of three men when one of them, Serge, played by Jeremy Franklin, purchases a modern work of art for a large sum of money. His friend Marc is horrified, and their relationship is considerably strained as a result of their differing opinions about what constitutes "art.” Yvan, caught in the middle, attempts to placate them both with hilarious consequences. As their courtesy and tolerance towards one another’s quirks and affinities wear thin, questions are raised about the nature of art and friendship.

With a ticket purchase, patrons will receive an emailed link and password for viewing this one-night-only production of Art on April 24. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for students.

Tickets may be purchased here.