Perhaps one of the few things Barbie heads, the Newlywed Game and Niagara Falls have in common is the part they play in the production “Wonder of the World,” which will open tonight in the Allen Bales Theatre.
Jimmy Kontos, the director, and his seven-member cast are more than ready to share the fun they have on stage with a full audience.
The play starts off with a dysfunctional couple – the socially awkward Cass and her sexually deviant husband, Kip. A fight causes Cass to run away in order to complete her bucket list, and she begins by escaping to Niagara Falls, where the majority of the play takes place.
On her journey of fate, exploration and meeting strangers along the way, Cass searches to attain freedom and happiness.
“She’s kooky, the show is kooky. I just love her infectious sense of hope,” Abby Jones, a second year graduate student, said about her character Cass. “It is harder to play someone more like yourself.”
Kontos chose this play to counteract “Purgatorio,” his darker play in the fall. The audition process was held at the beginning of the year, during the general audition for all of the plays this year. Out of the 170 actors, Kontos called back 16, and out of that 16 he chose seven to take on “Wonder of the World’s” cast.
“It is a lot of fun, they’re having a blast onstage … It’s silly and over the top,” Kontos said about his cast, who all play over-the-top characters. The cast began working on the show right after Christmas break, but Kontos has been preparing for months. He said he is proud of the actors in the show, and it is their strong work ethic that truly brought everything together.
“The two graduate students and undergrads really bring the show to life,” he said.
“Wonder of the World” will be in the Allen Bales Theatre from Feb. 20 to 25 at 7:30 p.m. and again on Feb. 26 at 2:30 p.m. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at the box office at Rowand-Johnson Hall or online.
“It should prove to be a really fun night – the smart humor will keep people laughing for days after,” Jones said.