The Department of Theatre will perform Steel Magnolias as its winter comedy on Feb. 14-16 and Feb. 22-23.
Students began preparation for the play almost immediately after returning from winter break for the spring semester.
“I am so very proud of this cast,” said Dawne Meeks, chair of the theatre department and director of Steel Magnolias. “They are beautiful women; intelligent and rooted in their faith walk.”
Steel Magnolias, written by Robert Harling and first performed in 1987, is a play focused on the bond of a group of women in a small, Southern town.
Meeks said Harling wrote the play as a love letter to his sister, Susan Harling-Robinson, after she died of complications from Type 1 diabetes. In the play, Harling-Robinson is represented as Shelby Eatenton-Latcherie.
“I love the definition of the women in this story,” Meeks said. “They are charming, intellectual, beautiful and strong.”
Steel Magnolias is set in Truvy’s Beauty Salon and focuses on six lead women as they go through emotional journeys of triumph and tragedy.
“While it’s listed as a comedy, it is so rich in terms of honesty that many people can relate to,” Meeks said. “It is a unique story and the characters are so beautifully defined.”
The title, Steel Magnolias, is meant to insinuate the idea that these women are delicate like magnolias and strong like steel.
“When Robert Harling wrote this piece, he talked about the single magnolia he saw out his window at a time when every blossom should have fallen,” Meeks said. “It’s a beautiful statement that God calls us to cling to him in times of hurt and uncertainty.”
The cast includes:
- Jessica Harms, sophomore theatre major from Yorba Linda, California, as Truvy Jones
- Cheney Emberg, sophomore theatre major from Spring, as Annelle Dupuy-DeSoto
- Nicole Sutphen, junior theatre maj0r from Abilene, as Clairee Belcher
- Victoria Steffins, junior theatre major from Calhoun, Louisiana, as M’Lynn Eatenton
- Haley Alvarez, junior theatre major from Pharr, as Louisa “Ouiser” Boudreaux
- Lauren McDonald, sophomore theatre major from Houston as Shelby Eatenton-Latcherie.
There will be performances on Feb. 14-16 and Feb. 22-23 at 7 p.m. in Fulks Theatre, with a talkback on Feb. 22 and a dinner theatre on Feb. 23.
Free cheesecake will be provided to those who attend the first showing on Valentine’s Day. Tickets can be purchased at acu.edu/theatre.