Dramashop presents ‘In the Next Room’

Dramashop’s first mainstage show of the second season, “In the Next Room,” will be a play to buzz about.

“In the Next Room” – also known as “The Vibrator Play” – tells the story about a doctor who cures women of hysteria by means of a vibrating machine.

He does this in his home unbeknownst to his wife, and the play shows the consequences that unfold.

This show, which observes women’s issues in the late Victorian era, was nominated for three Tony awards in 2010.

Allison Kessler, a senior theatre and communication arts major, will perform in her first Dramashop production as Catherine Givings, the doctor’s wife.

Kessler said her character often puts her foot in her mouth because she speaks whatever is on her mind, but she is a very honest woman who tries to be everybody’s friend.

This role has been a bit of a challenge, Kessler said, because she usually plays victims and while Catherine is sad, she’s not really a victim. She’s just trying to find herself.

Before auditioning, Kessler said she knew a lot about the show because she bought the script for her thesis.

When she found out that she had the chance to audition, she did.

Kessler said she really likes the cast of the show. She said they are all really nice, and she has had the opportunity to learn from everyone.

She said she also likes how the show is about women finding themselves through their sexuality.

Kessler said she would definitely recommend the show to any Gannon student who wants to see it. Not only because when they see the title “The Vibrator Play” they’ll probably giggle, but because the show has a deep message about understanding and overcoming boundaries and finding yourself.

Erika Krenn, a sophomore journalism communications student who plays Mrs. Daldry, said she would also recommend the show to Gannon students because the play shows what sex is really about, which is a connection.

“It’s less about sex and more about love and finding what you want,” Krenn said.

Krenn’s character, Mrs. Daldry, suffers from hysteria and is a patient of Dr. Givings. He treats her by “releasing magnetic fluid stored inside her womb,” which has never been released by relations with her husband.

During her treatment, Mrs. Daldry falls for the nurse, Annie, who administers the treatment to her.

Jess Ciccone, the director of the play, said she originally read the show intending not to like it and ended up loving it. The show has a lot of heart and focuses on the importance of sex, which has been downplayed in modern society.

Ciccone said the cast has met up several times outside of rehearsal to go over lines and work on the show together.

“They have made my life and my job a lot easier,” Ciccone said.

Ciccone said she would rate the show a strong PG-13 or a TV-MA because it’s not necessarily R, but there are a lot of suggested situations in the show.

To anyone who is skeptical about seeing the show, Ciccone said the show is probably not what they’re expecting and they should give the cast an opportunity to surprise them.

“In the Next Room” will be showing at 8 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday, and November 1-3  in the Renaissance Center on 10th and State streets. The show lasts two hours, including a 15 minute intermission.

 

KHADIJA DJELLOULI

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