“Mary Magdalene’s Greatest Hits” opens Wednesday

Arkansas Tech University students will offer four performances of the 15th century play “Mary Magdalene’s Greatest Hits” at the Techionery Theatre this fall.

The production will open with an 8 p.m. performance on Wednesday.

Subsequent evening performances on Oct. 30 and Nov. 1 will also begin at 8 p.m. There will be no performance on Oct. 31.

The final performance of the fall 2014 theatrical production at Arkansas Tech will take place at 2 p.m. on Nov. 2.

Tickets, which will be $8 for adults and $5 for students, will be available at the door and will not be sold in advance.

The Techionery Theatre is located on the Arkansas Tech campus at 1502 North El Paso Ave. in Russellville.

Dr. David Eshelman, associate professor of speech and director of theatre at Arkansas Tech, will direct the play. He explained that it is uncommon to see a play from the medieval era performed today.

“Most of these plays did not survive,” said Eshelman. “They are very different from contemporary theatre…more like civic or religious pageants rather than modern, realist plays. This play is different from other medieval works because it focuses on a female protagonist, Mary Magdalene.

“We are doing our best to make this show appealing to a wide audience by shortening it, by emphasizing acting technique and by highlighting beautiful production values such as sets, costumes and make-up.”

Senior Jordan Garton of Greenbrier will perform in the title role. Sophomore Sawyer Rentro of Russellville and freshman Sarah Hight of Bentonville will play the roles of king and queen of Marseilles, France.

The role of Jesus will be performed by freshman Jordan Taylor Graves of Mayflower.

Jenava Harris, a 2010 graduate of the University of the Ozarks, serves as technical supervisor for the Arkansas Tech theatre program.

She is coordinating a team of student designers and technicians that includes Travis Clark of Hot Springs, RoseMarie Cook of Bergman, Colton Holder of Paragould, Zach Martin of Bay, Glen Poole of Fort Smith, Deanna Russell of Russellville, Ben Stevens of Clarksville, Christina Williams of Cabot and Austin Womack of Clarksville.

For more information about the Arkansas Tech production of “Mary Magdalene’s Greatest Hits,” call (479) 964-0890.

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