Fifth annual Fringe Fest Erie begins


Theater creates a world of its own with endless possibilities for interpretations and visions.

As an actor or actress, the expression of these visions is limited due to the direction of a director, organization of the scenic and costume designers and the limited amount of decisions made by the actor or actress in the position.

On the other hand, directors experience a different world.

They get to bring what was once a figment of their imagination – living on the pages of a play bill – to the stage.

As Gannon University hosts the fifth Fringe Fest Erie, many students who have previously been in the spotlight will take a step back in order to experience the different realms of theater.

This year, Gannon will support a number of productions, such as “A Little Nonsense,” which will be co-directed by Paula Barrett, an associate professor in the theatre department, and Lauren Loop, a senior theatre and communication arts major.

This is the first production that Loop will direct after her many years of acting experience.

“I think it’s fun to be put into a character and seeing someone else`s vision, but it’s completely different seeing your own vision on stage,” Loop said. “I was completely unaware of all the choices a director actually has an opportunity to make.”

“A Little Nonsense,” comedic but dark humored, examines the ideas of the clown inside all of us, as the man tries to show his inner clown the more serious side of life. The show features Michael Haas and Zak Westfall.

“[It’s] unlike anything I have ever seen before,” Loop said.

Similar to “A Little Nonsense,” “Actors,” directed by Audrey Stadler, captures the transitions of life from a more child-like state to adulthood, as an elderly actor attempts to teach his young cast mate the proper ways of theater and delivery.

With “Actors,” Stadler enjoyed the same freedom of a director – putting in her own ideas and visions and having the overall say in the show.

Stadler said she believes the casting is one of her best decisions as a director in this process. The show features Chase Miles, Denis Seth and Khadija Djellouli.

“The cast is working hard and they are learning their lines,” Stadler said. “They naturally know the right emphases throughout all of [the script].”

Both directors agreed that one of the best and most fulfilling parts of directing is knowing in the end, the show portrays your vision, even if it must be shaped and changed to fit the perameters of this world. The show is your own.

The themes of these shows also portray the growth of life and the growth of the new directors as they embark on their journey in the 2015 Fringe Fest Erie.

The first performance of “Actors” begins at 8 p.m. Feb. 2 and 4 in Zurn 104.

It is soon followed by “A Little Nonsense,” with performances 8 p.m. Feb. 3 and 5 in the Schuster Theatre Green Room.

Many other interesting shows will be performed over the course of Fringe Fest all through the month of February and will be performed in various locations such as The Schuster Theatre, Zurn and Palumbo Academic Center.

For specific times and locations of each production, visit the Schuster Theater web page or Facebook page



[email protected]