Bluefield University in the News


by | Feb 16, 2012

Bluefield College Theatre will present Neil Simon's classic romantic comedy "Barefoot in the Park," Thursday through Sunday, February 23-26.

Performances will take place at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, February 23-25. The Sunday matinee, February 26, will begin at 2 p.m. All shows will take place in BC’s Harman Chapel Auditorium, where admission at the door will be $10 for adults and $5 for non-BC students and senior citizens.

“Barefoot in the Park” tells the story of two newlyweds, Corie and Paul Bratter, played by BC students Katherine Santschi and Josh King, who move into a broken-down sixth floor walk-up apartment six days after their honeymoon.

Corie is a vivacious, spontaneous adventurer, while Paul is a reserved, methodical planner. Their different approaches to life and love become apparent when Corie tries to arrange a date for her quiet, reserved mother, played by BC Theatre alumna Jennifer Bohannan, with the eccentric upstairs neighbor Victor Velasco, played by BC Theatre graduate Donnie Bales. By the end of the evening, Corie’s mother is missing, and the newlyweds are no longer speaking to one another.

“It’s the quintessential romantic comedy,” said Charles Reese, associate professor of theatre, who is co-directing BC’s version of the Neil Simon masterpiece, “about a couple who learn that romance is not always a walk in the park.”

“Barefoot in the Park” opened on Broadway in 1963. It was nominated for three Tony Awards and won the Best Director Award for Mike Nichols. The play ran for 1,530 performances — Neil Simon’s longest running play and the 10th longest running non-musical drama in Broadway history. It also became a popular film four years later, featuring Jane Fonda and Robert Redford as Corie and Paul.

The BC Theatre version of “Barefoot in the Park” will be presented “in the round,” according to Reese, a new approach to seating for the drama department, designed to enhance both the viewer and actor experience.

“This is something new for us,” said Reese. “Instead of our traditional approach of placing the audience in the auditorium seating, we are creating a 100-seat performance space on the stage of the theatre. That means our audiences will be sitting within inches of the performers during the play. It should be a really fun, exciting experience for audience and actors alike.”

Because of the unique arrangement, seating for BC’s “Barefoot in the Park” will be limited to 100 for each performance. As a result, reservations are strongly recommended. For reservations or for more information, contact the BC Theatre Department by phone at 276-326-4244 or 276-326-4213 or by e-mail at [email protected]

Bluefield University

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