Prepare for Charm
Student actors bring an odd beauty to Biola’s stage. | Jacob Knopf/ THE CHIMES
Humor, anger, depression, a beautiful girl, a school-wide drill and a chair ballet describe just a few of the quirky elements that make up “The Charm of Preparedness,” the show Biola’s theatre company will put on from Nov. 4 to 13.
Humor and deep thought
Student actors and actresses have rehearsed almost every night for several weeks to bring “The Charm of Preparedness” by Jorge Ignacio Cortiñas to Biola’s stage, hoping to bring humor as well as deep thought to the audience.
“It’s a play that I think everyone can connect well with,” said Paul Davis, sophomore film and theatre major and one of the lead characters, Nick. “There’s a lot of very diverse characters that seem very simple on the surface, but then when you really look at them and understand them more, they just really speak to a specific part that’s inside each person.”
The actors believe the show offers a decent amount of banter combined with analytical thought.
“I think I appreciate how funny it is and how lighthearted, but it also has a lot of deep thought about the meaning,” said Shannon Rossilli, sophomore double major in theatre and communication studies.
The show brings to life seven unique characters set in a small college. One character, a pre-med student named Tariq, decides to host a campus-wide drill in order to impress the lovely nursing student, Greta. Unfortunately for him, she may have other suitors as well.
Romance and realization
The drill turns the campus upside down and around, bringing uproar, romance and realization to the characters. The show holds serious meanings about life and growing up underneath its mask of jokes.
“I thought that this was well-designed for students to bring a sense of truth to it, but also to subvert expectations because, while it’s a comedy, there’s a lot that it says socially,” said Zachary Bortot, the director, in a video interview by Theatre 21. “It reminds me of Breakfast Club for modern age, though, because it sets up these stereotypes, and then it encourages the audience and the cast to dig deeper and see past what we judge on the cover of a person.”
All of the actors work diligently to perfect the show and the representations of their characters. Some have acted since before they can remember, while others just recently discovered their passion for the art form.
“I’ve been acting since first grade, so forever,” Davis said. “I did a lot of school shows and then I got into community theatre stuff in middle school.”
Joshua Dozier, freshman screenwriting major, recently began acting and has found his new acting career wildly successful, as he plays one of the lead roles in the Charm of Preparedness.
“I had done acting earlier this year, and it was a great experience and I wanted to do something like that again,” Dozier said.
By playing out their parts, the actors get to connect on a personal level with the fictional characters in the play, which allows them to develop an appreciation and love for the people the author imagined.
“Oh, I love my character. He’s real angsty and really weird,” Davis said. “I think I connect a lot with him which has been really fun. I really like that he’s quirky and doesn’t care what people think of him and that he can set his mind on things and that he’s really artistic.”
The actors enjoy the community theatre has to offer and the opportunity to enjoy watching their peers create.
“I love everyone that’s in the show. They are all so amazing and I think they all bring the characters to life in such random and fantastic ways,” said Lexi Pasch, a freshman theatre major.
Each one takes this opportunity seriously and excitedly as they join together with their friends to bring quality art to Biola.
“It’s so refreshing just to see everybody's enthusiastic energy and be ready and be passionate,” Dozier said “And I know that I’ve learned a lot from my peers in this show.”