Last updateWed, 11 Oct 2017 3pm


Crimes of the Heart Coming to Woods Theatre

Crimes of the HeartIf you ever took John Burke’s, Associate Professor and Director of theatre arts, acting class, you probably heard a speech about happiness. “You have a right to be happy and the hardest time to remember that is when you’re sad,” Burke said.

So it should not come as much of a surprise that one of the main themes of this year’s play, Crimes of the Heart, is the search for happiness.

Burke is directing this play by Beth Henley about three sisters who come back together after some time apart to deal with their sick grandfather, the man who raised them.

They’ve all had their fair share of problems. They grew up with an abusive father and their mother committed suicide when they were children, so it isn’t surprising that the three women don’t really have perfect lives.

Babe, the youngest, shot her husband. Meg, the middle child, moved out to Hollywood but failed to become a star, while Lenny, the oldest, didn’t do much of anything at all. She was the one to stay at home and take care of their grandfather. 

Even though, the dramatic comedy takes place in the 1970’s in Mississippi, you don’t think that will stop one from relating to the play.

Michael Rosas, who will play Barnette, said, “Although this show is set in Hazlehurst, Mississippi, a completely different world from North Eastern USA, this show brings up topics that most could relate to. The main question that this show poses to the audience, in my opinion, is should your past dictate your present? Everyone has skeletons in their closet, but what if they were all exposed?”

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Have You seen This ‘American Horror Story’?

American Horror StoryLet’s be clear on one thing. “American Horror Story” is not in any way shape or form “Glee,” even though they do share creators, Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuck. There is neither a joke nor a jazz hand in sight.

What you do see is a haunted house, a creepy little girl, body parts in jars and overdone music. The show is aptly titled because it does truly embrace every classic American horror story fixture.

Each episode begins with a flashback tale about the house and its former residents.

In the pilot, two boys die in the abandoned house after a little girl, Adelaide (Jamie Brewer), warns them of their fate in 1978. Flash forward to 2011 and the Harmons are buying the Victorian house in an effort to start fresh. Vivien Harmon (Connie Britton) had a miscarriage and then found her husband Ben (Dylan McDermott) in bed with one of his students, calling for their family to move from Boston to Los Angeles.  The family moves into the house, knowing that the last couple to live there died recently in a murder-suicide.

The Harmons’ new neighbor turns out to be Adelaide, the little girl who warned the boys they would die. She tells the Harmons the same thing after she breaks into their house. Her mother Constance (Jessica Lange) takes her back home but gives Vivien sage to cleanse the house. Vivien actually does burn the sage in a cleansing, but it doesn’t help because Ben starts hearing voices. He has some fixation with fire that he can’t control. It seems as though he’ll eventually light the house on fire.

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On Screen In Person Journeys to Bethlehem

Journeys to Bethlehem“I didn’t write this script.  I listened to it,” writer/director Jim Hanon said about his documentary, The Little Town of Bethlehem to a crowd of young and old on October 10 in Wilson Auditorium.  Hanon was the latest filmmaker to present his work and participate in a Q & A in the new film series, On Screen In Person.

On Screen In Person began at the University September 12 when Nancy Kelly presented her documentary, Trust, at Pollak Theatre.  This films series continues to be sponsored by the Department of Communication and the Performing Arts Series; it is also funded by the National Endowment for the Arts Regional Touring Program.

The Little Town of Bethlehem focused on three individuals living in Israel, Sami Award (Christian), Yonatan Shapira (Jewish), and Ahmad Al’Azzeh (Muslim). 

Together, they talked about living in Israel or Palestine and discussed the difficulties they had and still face in this conflicted region.  They then discussed how each has worked to promote peace in the Middle East through non-violent demonstrations and organizations.

Chad Dell, chair of the Department of Communication, welcomed the audience and said On Screen In Person is a touring film series along the East coast and four more filmmakers are scheduled to visit the University.

Since the Auditorium is smaller than Pollak Theatre, Dell encouraged the audience to move up and said, “This screen is merely respectable.  The sound system is good.  Take advantage of the special seats up front.”  Dell also thanked colleague Andrew Demirjian, specialist professor from the Department of Communication, for bringing his classes to this event, Donna Dolphin, Communication professor for working with Dell on On Screen In Person, as well as Saliba Sarsar, professor of Political Science and Associate Vice President for Global Iniatives.

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Contact Information

The Outlook
Jules L. Plangere Jr. Center for Communication
and Instructional Technology (CCIT)
Room 260, 2nd floor

The Outlook
Monmouth University
400 Cedar Ave, West Long Branch, New Jersey

Phone: (732) 571-3481 | Fax: (732) 263-5151