“Waiting for the Host” is a must-see

Theatre 21 gave hilarity and fondness to audiences in its newest production.

Kate Bomar, Staff Writer

Theatre 21 introduced “Waiting for the Host,” which was performed in Mayers Auditorium. Seven cast members illustrated the reality of Zoom, a familiar memory.

ACT 1

What started out as a simple show turned into a humorous, thought-provoking narrative. Six cast members join a Zoom meeting in Spring 2020 and record theatrical readings of  “The Passion of the Christ” for a church website. The audience roared with laughter throughout the whole show, as the cast brought to life the reality of producing a play amid a global pandemic.

The first half explored the journey of performing the story of Christ. Although humorous, the cast exceeded expectations by communicating the emotional gravity the story endures. It led the audience to question the presence of God in a time as dark as the pandemic. Father Theodore, played by senior applied physics major Gabe Schippa struggled throughout the show, questioning God’s omnipresence. By the end of the show, he sees that God was beside him all along.

ACT II 

In a follow-up Zoom meeting two months later, the plot introduces a new character that adds comedy. A Manhattan theatre director named Dodd, played by senior cinema and media arts major Griffin Douglass, helps launch a community theatre at the church. The characters attempt to put on updated versions of medieval Bible plays and receive an unexpected guest.

THE HOOK 

Humorous and relatable, the show features unforgettable moments such as Zoom bombers and “old lady” malfunctions.

“There was so much that we all went through at the same time,” said junior theatre major and audience member Megan O’Connell. “Getting to rewatch that two years later, I just can’t believe time went by that fast and how we adapted so quickly,”

Giddy and uncomfortable romantic moments added an extra charm to the storyline. Sophomore theatre major Tanner Bradburry played a character who wrote romantic poems to a girl for two years. Only days after finally getting the guts to introduce himself to this girl, the pandemic cuts him off.

The reality of what an online relationship looked like was perfectly portrayed by senior theatre major Raina Abigail Putri and junior theatre major Trevor Jones. Putri played Sara, a theatre buff who lives in the Big City, but was petrified of contracting the coronavirus. Jones’s character, Vincent, struggled with his relationship with Sara, as she valued her career instead of the relationship.

Each character was uniquely written and perfectly casted. Senior theatre major Brynn Nieuwenhuis played Effie, an older woman who struggled with Zoom and peppered the storyline with witty one-liners.

There is just one more show left on Sunday. Tickets can be purchased here.

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