Theatre Program presents double feature of plays that raise questions

The Grove City College Theatre Program presents a double feature of plays that present questions about faith.

“Doubt: A Parable” by John Patrick Shanley will be performed at 5:30 p.m March 19 to 21 and at 7:30 p.m. March 27 and 28 in the Little Theatre of Pew Fine Arts Center. “The Christians” by Lucas Hnath will be performed at 7:30 p.m. March 19 to 21 in Ketler Auditorium of Pew Fine Arts Center.

“Doubt: A Parable,” which won a 2005 Pulitzer Prize for drama, tells a complicated story of a Catholic school in the 1960s. It dramatizes a test of wills between a young priest, Father Flynn, and a starchy older nun, Sister Aloysius, who suspects Flynn of having "interfered with" a 12-year-old male pupil. While keeping the audience guessing whether or not Flynn is guilty, Shanley explores the Roman Catholic Church at a crisis point, when the Second Vatican Council was urging the ancient institution to rethink its relationship to the modern world.

Backed by a live choir, Lucas Hnath’s “The Christians” is a mesmerizing drama that explores a schism that arises in an evangelical megachurch. A revelation experienced by Pastor Paul causes a potentially disastrous rupture in the congregation, testing whether religion will tear it apart or bring it together. In this award-winning drama, playwright Hnath takes a critical, but compassionate look at the topic of faith and following today and how who we follow shapes what we believe.

“Both plays deal with a personal crisis of faith. The leading characters in both plays feel convicted that God is leading them to make an important decision in regard to their faith,” play director Betsy J. Craig, professor of English and director of the Theatre Program, said.

“I am very excited to bring these plays to campus because I think they are likely to make all of us a little uncomfortable. They both talk about things we, as Christians, aren’t always at ease with discussing,” Craig said. “But for me, that is what great theater should do.”

The purpose of theatre at Grove City College is to tell the human story with both truth and humility according to Craig. “By allowing our audiences to engage these dramatic narratives through the lens of our Christian faith, we seek to aid them in developing insight into individuals, cultures and situations different than our own. In so doing, we invite the stranger among us. It is through the telling of these stories we can often see our own frailties and shortcomings, and we can then begin to see more clearly what we yearn for most,” Craig said.

For more about the Grove City College Theater Program, visit www.gcc.edu/theater.

Theatre Program presents double feature of plays that raise questions

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