Local Art

Published on September 18th, 2012 | by TLV News


Ole Miss Theatre Presents: *The Complete History of America (Abridged)* …(September 20-30, 2012)


Ole Miss Theatre is Proud to Present the First Installment of Its

“The Power of Politics” Productions with

The Complete History of America (Abridged)

A magical, hilarious romp through the history of our beloved country, The Complete History of America (Abridged) leaves no one out of the joke. Directed by Joe Turner Cantú, Complete History is a three-man show, where the gentlemen characterize many historical figures including iconic women. Ole Miss Senior Jeremy Cooper is 1/3 of the three man comedic force. He is most looking forward to interacting with the audience and getting them into the action.  

“This show is not typical of most theatre where you merely sit and enjoy the show,” Cooper said. “The audience is a part of the show as much as the actors are.” When asked about why folks should venture out to see this production, Cooper said “The show is a collection of skits to parody history, which makes it unique from any other show this season. The show is full of energy and laughs – we allow the audience to enjoy the show by getting them in on the jokes!”

Although the show only has three characters, many others are involved, such as lighting design student Paul Kennedy. This is his first time lighting the Ford Center Studio Theatre, but he has experience under his belt. Kennedy took a Broadway Lighting Master Class this summer and said, “It will be very influential to my design choices for this production.” His inspiration for the show is “the inner child in everyone.”

He continued, “These three guys are putting on a show in the same creative way a child would, and it works great.” When asked what he’s looking forward to most about the show Kennedy responded, “Opening night laughter! As a lighting designer I’m always trying to convey the intent of the playwright and with this show, it’s all about comedy.”

Another big part of the show is costuming three men to look like a variety of American historical figures over a span of 500 years. No easy feat, if you ask the costume designer of the show, Lindsey Sikes. “The characters are not necessarily the three actors,” Sikes said.”They are the players of all the characters of American history.” She continues, “I want to give them a basic ‘political comedian’ look and then place costume props on top – this allows for comedy to manifest naturally. For instance, George Washington wears a powdered wig and aviator glasses!”   Sikes added, “This production has been a lot of fun so far, and I look forward to seeing the results and see the costumes come to life!”

Director Joe Turner Cantú said the patrons can expect the following, “The audience will laugh and laugh, hold their sides for a moment, and laugh some more.” Cantú continues, “In the great American tradition of political satire, The Complete History of America (Abridged) delivers.”  When asked why he decided to direct this play Cantú responded, “After the theme of this year’s season was chosen, I decided I wanted to do a comedy and this was chosen because it’s so well written and funny. I just didn’t know how much fun this was going to be! It’s hard work but worth it as we get to laugh most of the time.”  

Ole Miss Theatre’s “work hard, work smart and have fun” attitude for every production pays off as Oxford was named by Livability.com as the second best college town, citing Ole Miss Theatre as one of the reasons to be in Oxford.  

There is mature content in this production. A reception is to follow the Friday, September 21 performance. All are welcome to stay and meet the cast and crew. For more information for tickets, please contact the UM Box Office, (662) 915-7411.

As a special event, Ole Miss Theatre and the Department of Nutrition and Hospitality Management are offering “Dinner and a Show” on Thursday, September 20th and Thursday, September 27th. The cost is $30 per adult. Dinner will start at 6 pm in Lenoir Hall and The Complete History of America (Abridged) will begin at 7:30 pm in the Ford Center for the Performing Arts Studio Theatre. Please contact the Department of Theatre Arts for more information and to reserve seats, (662) 915-7287.


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About the Author

The Local Voice is a bimonthly entertainment guide and newspaper based in Oxford, Mississippi, covering and distributed in North Central Mississippi, including Oxford, Ole Miss, Taylor, Abbeville, Water Valley, Lafayette County, Yalobusha County, and parts of Panola County, Marshall County, and Tupelo . The Local Voice is distributed free to over 255 locations in North Mississippi and also available as a full color PDF download worldwide on the internet.

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