Ashland University Theatre Opens Season with ‘Bus Stop’

9/7/12 ASHLAND, Ohio -- Ashland University Department of Theatre opens its 2012-2013 “Season of Comedy from Stage and Screen” with William Inge's “Bus Stop,” which first appeared on Broadway in 1955 and then on the big screen starring Marilyn Monroe in 1956. Directed by Professor of Theatre Ric Goodwin, evening performances begin at 7:30 p.m. in the intimate Studio Theatre on Sept. 27-29 and Oct. 4-6, along with a 2 p.m. matinee on Sept. 30.

In this romantic comedy/drama, a freak snow storm forces a passenger bus to have a weather-enforced layover in a Kansas road-side diner. Romantic relationships and friendships ensue while lives intersect among eight ordinary yet quirky characters including the diner's owner "Grace Hoylard" played by senior musical theatre major Johanna Regan (Killingworth, CT), her intelligent yet naive waitress "Elma Duckworth" played by junior musical theatre major Emily Jeppesen (Jefferson, OH), and senior theatre major Aaron Arnold (Chardon, OH) as local sheriff "Will Masters."

Characters from the passenger bus are the aspiring night club singer "Cherie" portrayed by junior journalism and digital media major Rebecca Ribley (Medina, OH); the brash, young cowboy "Bo Decker" played by junior theatre major Jay Kunzi (Pataskala, OH); senior theatre major David Wagar (Sharon Center, OH) as the mature and wise cowboy "Virgil Blessing"; senior theatre major Austin Arnold (Chardon, OH) as the college philosophy professor "Dr. Gerald Lyman"; and junior hospitality management major Brandon Wurgess (Fremont, OH) as the bus driver "Carl."

The production's set is co-designed by former technical director Brian Kelley and Assistant Professor of Theatre Scott Chapman while Assistant Professor of Theatre Sarah Russell designed the costumes. Junior musical theatre major Christian Neely (Amherst, OH) and sophomore theatre and journalism/digital media major Benjamin Black (Akron, OH) designed the lighting and sound effects, respectively. Senior theatre major Emily Plank (Cinnamon Lake, OH) is the show's stage manager while freshman theatre major Erica Brown (Massillon, OH) is the assistant stage manager.

Season tickets are still available and include admission to all four main stage productions at a reduced price compared to single tickets. Season tickets for all four productions are $32 for adults; and $28 for senior citizens, students and Ashland University faculty/staff. Single tickets are $10 for adults; $9 for senior citizens, students, University faculty/staff; $8 for groups of 10 or more; and $2 for Ashland University students.

To purchase tickets, call the Ashland University Box Office at 419-289-5125, Monday through Friday, 12 to 6 p.m.; or purchase online 24/7 at www.ashland.edu/tickets. For more information about the department of theatre, visit www.ashland.edu/theatre, find us on Facebook or contact Tricia Applegate, coordinator of performing arts publicity and events, at 419-289-5950 or tapplega@ashland.edu.

Ashland University, ranked in the top 200 colleges and universities in U.S. News and World Report’s National Universities category for 2012, is a mid-sized, private university conveniently located a short distance from Akron, Cleveland and Columbus, Ohio. Ashland University (www.ashland.edu) values the individual student and offers a unique educational experience that combines the challenge of strong, applied academic programs with a faculty and staff who build nurturing relationships with their students.