First Show in Marinoff Theater Talks Pertinent Issues Through a Though-Provoking Spectacle

On a brisk Thursday night, the Marinoff Theater housed the opening performance of “Really Really,” a modern play executed by Shepherd University’s theater department.

“Really Really” was performed in the Marinoff Theater in the new Contemporary Arts Building on Nov. 6 – 8 at 8 p.m., Nov. 9 at 2 p.m. and will be shown Nov. 12 – 15 at 8 p.m. The play, which is about many convoluted trials and tribulations faced by college students, appropriately opened on 3D Thursday, a day dedicated to standing up against sexual assault.

“Really Really” was written by Paul Downs Colaizzo and directed by Ed Herendeen. The play is an intense drama focusing on many touchy subjects, including sexual assault, in a college atmosphere. Emotions run high as the real events of a Saturday night college party become less clear as the play progresses.

On a set covered with beer bottles and plastic cups, a nightmare situation occurs for one young man being accused of rape. The play continues to take unexpected turns resulting in the lines of the truth being blurred. It becomes more difficult to tell which of the characters is really in the wrong until the end; at this point, everyone has shown their faults—some much greater than others.

Eileen Waggoner, recipient of the McMillan Family Theater Scholarship, plays Leigh, a girl with a questionable past. She comes home with her roommate, Grace, played by Kaitlyn Miller, after a party. In the morning, the story follows the pair through the events of their days. Grace leaves for a leadership conference, and Leigh slowly begins to reveal that her night may not have been as great as it seems to others.

The play also follows the hosts of the party, Cooper, played by Tim Brooks, and Davis, played by James Bumbera. When their friend Johnson, played by Zack Perez, drops in to play video games, things begin to get interesting.

The trio discusses the night before recalling how Davis and Leigh, both highly intoxicated, disappeared into Davis’s bedroom at the party. This might not be a problem if Leigh’s boyfriend, Jimmy, played by Cody Brown, wasn’t in the picture.

As the two groups begin to figure out what actually happened at the party, Leigh and Jimmy discuss her secret pregnancy and an apparent miscarriage. Jimmy finds out about her escapade with Davis, followed by cries of rape, which is really really a big problem.

As everyone struggles to figure out whether Leigh is telling the truth or Davis, her sister Haley, played by Theresa Christmas, enters the scene and seems to make matters worse; simultaneously, she is also able to shed some light on Leigh’s past.

Davis ends up suspended from the school with a court appearance on the horizon as Leigh’s claims begin to turn his friends against him. Davis finally confronts Leigh, which then leads to consensual sex.

The next morning, Leigh’s master plan is unveiled. Davis erupts in anger, and he sexually assaults her.

“Really Really” is a play that dares to go where some won’t. It faces real life situations head on, and it distorts the line between truth and deceit. The play is for mature audiences only, but the performance can prove a rewarding and thought-provoking experience.

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