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Monmouth’s Annual Haunted Tour

MU Players, which is Monmouth’s Student-Run Theatre Troupe, put on their annual Haunted Tour on Friday, Oct. 20 in Anacon Hall for all to come see their Haunted House-like attraction.

Every year, this group of student performers puts on costumes, makeup, and special effects with a specific theme. They guide students, faculty, and friends to come through and experience a hauntingly fun time. With hard work and lots of preparation for this long-awaited event, these students have year after year created a tradition that is not worth missing.

In addition to MU Players, the Student Activities Board (SAB) was also involved in Haunted Tour. SAB has been involved in the past and have become an integral part of the process. This year, SAB also helped with lighting and other Halloween equipment to ensure a successful event.
Gillian Sepp, a sophomore biology student and Vice President of Larger Events, said, “Though our level of involvement has varied in the past, this year SAB was responsible for check-in, group management, candy & refreshments.”

This year’s theme is Doll House, which led the actors and actresses of MU Players to embrace their doll-like personas. With movies such as Chucky and Meghan grossing millions of dollars and becoming international sensations, the idea of haunted, cursed or evil dolls thrills and terrifies people and has become a phenomenon to behold. MU Players has decided to bring this experience to Anacon for students to get the fright of a lifetime.

The tour is made by 5 committees: scenic/props, costumes, makeup, script, and ambiance. Each group is dedicated to their role and to making the tour as fun and spooky as possible. The teams create decor and design concepts for each character on the tour. Members, both new and old, can then be a part of workshops for acting where they learn their parts, lines and actions that are required for the show.
Most of the set up associated with Haunted Tour is done the day of the event. Ava Komasz, a senior communications student and technical director of MU Players, said, “It’s [Haunted Tour] a full day of work, but the payoff is worth it.”

She continued, “Starting in the morning, we set up the big set pieces and then from there we decorate around it. A lot of decorating is hanging wall decor or staging the rooms in the Student Center to look like a home.”

This year, in order to properly show off the Dollhouse theme, there will be four distinct rooms. These will be created by using tents so students on the tour will get the real feel of walking through a haunted dollhouse, which includes creepy lighting and sound to properly set the mood.
Once the theme was chosen over the summer, the teams got to work. Both members of MU Players and outside volunteers have created scripts so that the experience is as precise and perfect. The student actors wore creepy and classic doll costumes and mortifying makeup that matches the theme and help set the scene in each room.

Sheri Anderson, MFA, theater professor and advisor to MU Players, said, “Haunted Tour is consistently one of our most successful events. It provides an opportunity for theatre students to do the things they do best, entertaining in elaborate costumes and settings, in a way that is in direct contact with the audience.”
Anderson expressed, “It [Haunted Tour] is just a really fun way to relieve stress and have a great time.”
Sepp emphasized, “The best part about Haunted Tour was seeing everyone after they went through and hearing thoughts about it, everyone loved it! I would recommend that other students participate in this event in the future, either by being in the cast/crew or just attending. It was such a fun event, and working with MU Players was great!”

Many faculty, friends and family of the cast, and students showed their support of this event to get spooky season started off strong.