“All the work never made me fall out of love with it – just made me fall even more in love,” said Kory Cudmore, a fourth-year TRU theatre student and lead in the upcoming Actor’s Workshop Theatre production.
The TRU Actor’s Workshop Theatre (AWT) is celebrating its 30th season, opening with the production “Patience” on Oct. 9, written by Canadian playwright Jason Sherman and directed by Wesley Eccleston.
“Patience” is the story of a man named Reuben, who has everything he needs and leads a perfect life. He meets an old friend and in the span of 24 hours it all falls apart. He loses his job and his wife leaves him. In the rest of the play he tries to find out where he went wrong and put his life back together.
The three lead roles are played by Kory Cudmore as Reuben, Daniel Ondang as Paul and Chanelle Renee as Sarah. Work started in April when they received the scripts and rehearsals began on Aug. 25.
Audience members can look forward to an emotionally charged, dynamic play.
“This play is very episodic. There are many flash-forwards, flash-backs and sidebars,” Renee said.
She explained that the non-linear structure of “Patience” has been one of the greatest challenges to tackle.
“There will be a scene where you’ve been emotionally destroyed. Then the next is a flashback to a party. You have to switch between those states in a matter of 15 seconds while changing costumes,” Cudmore said.
The content of this production makes it a “harder drama” than what the AWT is used to doing, said AWT publicist Taran Waterous.
In celebration of its 30th season, AWT will be hosting an opening night gala held in the art gallery adjacent to the Black Box Theatre following the first show on Oct. 9. The gala is open to everyone and will feature a bar, free food and an award ceremony for outstanding theatre students.
Looking ahead, Waterous outlined the upcoming AWT productions starting with Robin Nichol directing “The Best of Everything” at the end of November, Heidi Verwey directing Shakespeare’s “As You Like It” at the end of February, and finally, the fourth-year students directing their own show during the Directors Festival happening April 6 to 11.
Renee, Ondang and Cudmore all attested to the psychological difficulty of performing in “Patience.” However, they also agreed that once the content was mastered, they felt liberated and free to become that character within the confines of that story, in order to make a connection with the audience.
“Having that emotional connection, having the wherewithal and bravery to put that out in front of a hundred people. You can’t fake that. It’s true. There is no lying to the audience,” Ondang said.