By Katrina Schell, Performing Arts Division Head
Every year, the Cross Center and LCA’s theater department puts on three shows in the Fall, Winter, and Spring. We have already seen House at Pooh Corner in the fall, and Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead was a recent success in the winter season. This school year, there is one final production in the works entitled International Arrivals. A piece that did not exist before October, rehearsals for this new show are currently underway.
If you have not read this play, you are not alone. Every story that takes place was found in-house earlier this year, then crafted into a tangible script by the playwriting class and various other members of the LCA community. However, this production is more than a single play. Dozens of stories about overseas encounters are told through skits, dances, music, and monologues. If you are planning to see this show, prepare for an experience unlike any other. If you are not planning on seeing this show, I highly advise you change your plans.
Now, what exactly does International Arrivals mean? The title is intentionally vague, allowing for ambiguity in storytelling. The production tackles multiple themes relating to interactions in different countries. Cultures collide and problems arise in serious, sad, and humorous ways. Whether the actors are addressing the pronunciation of “Worcester” or the use of technology in far-away family situations, the truth of time spent out of your home country is revealed on the stage.
What can you expect from seeing this show? Short answer, you can expect a very different experience than a traditional play setup. Rather than having central characters that are present from beginning to end, the production includes many different sized roles with some actors taking on multiple characters. Each scene is separate from the one before, both in presence of characters and in overall attitude. You can expect to laugh, to cry, to be very confused at some points, and you can definitely expect originality.
LCA’s community is filled with stories about international experiences mainly because we have a large number of international students and faculty. This production is not only entertaining at face-value; it also addresses real issues and experiences that many of our students share. The short scenes illustrate the emotional implications behind living away from your family, not understanding the culture you are living in, and many other relatable issues. Dance and song expresses these feelings in ways that words cannot.
Dreamed up in the minds of our theater director and playwrights, International Arrivals is a spring production like no other. Whether you enjoy funny sketches or serious monologues, this show will cater to every taste while addressing the difficult issues plaguing our society and school community. Auditions have just recently closed, roles have been cast, and the rehearsal process will commence after the completion of Academics in Action. Good luck, cast of International Arrivals, and I hope everyone has a chance to see the final product!