Theatre Simpson is at it again, but this time with the production of “Night of the Soul” premiering on February 13 at 7:30 p.m.
“Night of the Soul” takes place in a hotel on the southern coast of England. On the night before his father’s funeral, Francis Chappell, played by freshman theater major Bryce Browning, checks into a hotel, which is home to a 14th century ghost, Johanna.
Johanna, played by sophomore Randa Meierhenry, wanders the hotel in silence, longing for human contact.
“These two lost souls are there for one night and only have each other and there’s this chance of redemption that there hasn’t been for a long time,” senior theater major and stage manager Allyson Louzek said.
According to Browning, a usual theater rehearsal is around three hours long and consists of warm up, dialect work (a British accent is required), running lines and prop work.
Meierhenry, who is double majoring in music performance and theater, said, “We have to talk in British accents literally from start to finish, so we can get the dialect in our minds and in our mouths.”
Browning, who has been in nine theatrical productions leading up to “Night of the Soul” said, “I really like getting audiences to react. I like making people cry, making people laugh, not sadistically or anything, but I like when you’ve done so well that you’ve made
someone feel something.”
Meierhenry, who has been involved in countless productions since seventh grade, is very excited to play a ghost in this production.
“There are a few scenes where I am present and doing things, but no one can see me but Francis,” she said.
Louzek said, “There was a point at the very beginning of the process where we were all wondering how we were going to get this all done being that we are performing the show about a month ahead of schedule. Usually, our spring show happens in March.”
Meierhenry said she is nervous about how the show will turn out because of their short rehearsal process and all of the lines she and Browning have, but overall she believes they will be ready.
Even with a short time to prepare, Louzek said they will be ready in time. “Theater is a very collaborative effort and making sure we all work together and help each other is a very important part of that,” she said.
Browning said, “It’s been so crazy, but I think it will be great!”
“I am most looking forward to seeing the audience’s reaction,” Louzek said. “It will be nice to finally have somebody respond to what we have been working on.”
Browning said, “Everybody is putting in a lot of work, and I hope everybody comes and sees it because it is going to be really good.”
“Night of the Soul” will be performed six different nights from February 13 to 18 at 7:30 p.m. in Barnum Studio Theatre in the Blank Performing Arts Center.
Tickets are free for students and range from $8 to $11 for non-students.