Theatre Productions

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    Schuster Theater 2014-15 Season

     2014-2015 Season Cover designed by MC Gensheimer 


    By Joe Orton

    Directed by Paula Barrett

    Hal and Dennis, two young and inept criminal-wannabes try to rob a bank next to a funeral parlor where Dennis works. They run to Hal’s house and hide the money in his recently-deceased mother’s coffin. But to make room for it, they have to move her corpse around the house. Inspector Truscott arrives, forcing Hal and Dennis to distract him from his investigation. They enlist Nurse McMahon, who herself has been “nursing” the bereaved Mr. McLeavy, Hal’s father.  

    Orton’s satirical twists on bereavement, law, corruption, and sex have always made me laugh. His personally screwed-up life forced him into artistic commentaries on contemporary morality that, decades after his untimely murder, continue to challenge and enlighten our own sensitivities.

    Thursday-Saturday, October 2-4 and October 9-11 at 8:00 pm
    Sunday, October 12 at 2:00 pm


    Music, Book and Lyrics by Brendan Milburn, Valerie Vigoda, and Book and Lyrics by Rachel Sheinkin

    Directed by Fr. Shawn Clerkin

    From Fr. Shawn Clerkin:

    "The holidays are a time of celebration and merriment, but for one over-worked/under-inspired single office worker, they are enough to drive a person crazy. Resolved to hide away from the office New Year’s Eve party, his solitude is interrupted first by a door-to-door salesperson, and then by the Hans Christian Anderson “Little Match Girl” that her visit invokes. With a contemporary pop/rock/jazz score created by GrooveLily, this alternative holiday entertainment will move and challenge us to see that the world can “look like new…on the first day of the year!”

    When my good friend, collaborator, and inspiring conductor, Andrew Rainbow, was with Theatrical Rights Worldwide, Inc. in NYC, he gave me the script and original GrooveLily recording of STRIKING 12. As I drove back to Erie from the city, I listened to the incredible music, lush harmonies, hysterical lyrics, and moving tale. Twice, I had to pull over twice because I couldn’t see the road –first from laughter and then from emotions. I LOVE this musical, and am happy to be the first to bring it to Erie – thanks to Andrew! "


    Thursday-Saturday, December 4-6 and December 11-13 at 8:00 pm

    Sunday, December 7 at 2:00 pm 


    Directed and Produced by Jax Kubiak

    What would Gannon University Schuster Theatre be without a Fringe? This year, our fifth annual Erie Fringe Festival is being moved to February, where our theatre program can commit more time, energy, and support to the productions which can be found all over downtown Erie. For more information about Fringe Fest Erie 2015, please contact Fringe Producer Jax Kubiak at (814) 871-7720 or


    Fringe Productions:


    "Actors"  by Conrad Bromberg.  Directed by Audrey Stadler.  Performances are Feb 2 and 4 at 8pm.  Location TBD.


    "A Little Nonsense"  by Oliver Hoare.  Directed by Lauren Loop and Paula Barrett.  "A Little Nonsense" is an original dark comedy that explores the clown inside every man.  Frustrated and angered by his Clown's freedom to play and inability to take life seriously, a Man decides to teach his Clown a lesson and beat some sense into him.  Mixing powerful drama with genuine hilarity, "A Little Nonsense" plays with the shifting light and dark in all of us and leaves us valuing yet questioning our balance.  Performances are Feb 3 and 5 at 8pm in the Schuster Theatre Green Room (620 Sassafras Street - 1st floor).


    "GU Talent Show" Production Managed by Brianna Woods.  Last year we brought to you the "Faculty, Staff, and Alumni Talent Show".  We're back!  And this year, we are adding student talent!  Come see your professors, staff, alumni, and fellow students show you their hidden talents.  Performances are Feb 6 and 7 at 8pm in the Schuster Theatre (620 Sassafras Street - main theatre space on the 2nd floor).


    "Like Father, Like Son" By Roman Denisyuk.  Directed by Roman Denisyuk and Todd Paropacic.  Based on a true story that occurred in Erie, "Like Father, Like Son" is unlike any faith play you have ever seen.  Filled with an array of characters, ranging from Irish bakers to a Grand Duchess; it focuses on a young boy, Ronny Greevesman, who must face his past and accept the consequences of his actions.  There is a unique style of comedy throughout the show.  The play focuses on redemption on many levels, the power of forgiveness, and how important morality and ethics, in other words humanity, is to our survival.  Performances are Feb 9 and 11 at 8pm.  Location is TBD.


    "Mainstream"  by Conor Grey (Class of 2014).  Directed by Leah Johnson.  "Mainstream" captures the essence of the elusive hipster.  Discover a world of thrifting, local coffee shops, and charitable causes that you've probably never heard of before.  Just make sure to leave your mainstream, conformist thinking at the door - this play will challenge your perceptions of art, love, and what it means to be human.  Performances are Feb 10 and 12 at 8pm.  Location is TBD.


    "Bedtime Stories" by Laugh/Riot.  "Bedtime stories takes a collection of 3 short scenes from Charles Mee as its start and jumps into seven disparate scenes about relationships.  Laugh/Riot's ensemble cast will change characters each night, guaranteeing that each audience will see a completely new show.  The shows range from comedic to dramatic, romantic to slapstick, and each scene's tone changes depending on the cast that night.  This show is intended for mature audiences and contains adult language, adult situations, and violence.  Performances are Feb 16 and 18 at 8pm in the Schuster Theatre (620 Sassafras Street - main theatre space on the 2nd floor).


    "The Sketch Comedy Show" by Gannon Students.  Director:  Michael Fujito.  Head Writer:  Michael Haas.  Artistic Director/Comic Advisor:  Zach Flock.  What happens when you take 6 Gannon students and have them write a short comedy skits?  This show is the result of just that!  Entirely made up of sketches written by Gannon students, this show will showcase the different comedy styles of the writers.  It will have you laughing in your seats from the scene of a bad baby sitter to a series of water flavored water commercials.  Come and laugh with us!  Performances are Feb 17 and 19 at 8pm.  Location is TBD.   


    "Oedipus Tex"  by Bach/Schickele.  Directed by Tom Barton.  This country-western spin-off of “Oedipus the King” is sure to leave you rolling in the aisles. In the original stage play by the Greek author Sophocles, a beloved King attempts to save his city from a terrible curse by sending his brother-in-law to find the person who murdered the previous king. During this journey, Oedipus conducts his own search of the town, looking for anyone who may have had a hand in the murder of Laius, the former king. He eventually questions a blind prophet, who informs Oedipus that the king himself is the killer. The prophecy bothers Oedipus, who realizes later that not only did he kill Laius, fulfilling the man’s prophecy, but he also had a family with his mother, fulfilling another prophecy by the same prophet many years ago. In disgrace, Oedipus gouges out his eyes and moves out of the city into exile. Now, how will all of this fit into a Western setting? You’ll have to come and see for yourself! Performances are Feb 20 at 8pm and Feb 21 at 2pm in the Schuster Theatre (620 Sassafras Street - main theatre space on the 2nd floor). 


    Associated Productions:

    Dramashop - Once again our friends at Dramashop will produce an original play in association with Fringe.  More information about the play that will be produced will be shared soon.  Performances are Feb 2-3 and 10-11 at 8pm.  Dramashop is located at 1001 State Street on the 2nd floor of the Renaissance Center.  For more information, please visit

    All An Act - All An Act Theatre will be producing Agatha Cristie's "Witness for the Prosecution" as an associated production this year.  Performances are Feb 13-14 at 7:30pm, Feb 15 at 3pm, Feb 20-21 at 7:30pm, and Feb 22 at 3pm.  All An Act is located at 652 West 17th Street.  For more information, please visit

    Laugh/Riot - Located in Edinboro, Laugh/Riot joins us for the first time this year.  Laugh/Riot will be producing a "New Works Festival" in association with Fringe Fest Erie.  Exact details of shows, concepts, plays, etc. can be found on their website.    Performances are Feb 20 and 21 at 7:30pm and Feb 22 at 2:30pm.  Laugh/Riot is located on the campus of Edinboro University.  For more information, please visit

    Erie Playhouse - The Erie Playhouse will be producing "Songs for a New World" by Jason Robert Brown.  Performances are Feb 23 and 24.  The Erie Playhouse is located at 13 West 10th Street.  For details, reservations, and more information, please visit   


    Admission to all Fringe Fest Erie 2015 productions on the Gannon Campus are $5.  There will be no complimentary tickets/admissions to these shows.  If you are planning on seeing multiple productions on campus, consider purchasing a Gannon Fringe Pass.  This pass will allow you to see all 8 productions being performed on Gannon's campus.  Cost of the Gannon Fringe Pass is $15.  Please note, the Gannon Fringe Pass does not give you admission to our associated productions at Dramashop, the Erie Playhouse, All An Act, or Laugh/Riot's performance in Edinboro.  Tickets for admission to our associated productions will be sold at each of those venues.

    All proceeds from Fringe Fest Erie 2015 will go to support the Schuster Theatre's trip to Edinburgh, Scotland in 2017 to perform at the International Collegiate Theatre Festival.  We thank you for supporting Fringe Fest Erie.  If you have any questions about Fringe, please contact Fringe Fest Producer, Jax Kubiak at (814) 871-7720 or  



    More information to be posted soon


    By George Bernard Shaw 

    Directed by Fr. Shawn Clerkin

    From Fr. Shawn Clerkin: 

    "100 years ago, George Bernard Shaw first presented his wonderful comedy of social class and transformation to the London stage and then to the world. Since then, the immortal characters of Henry Higgins, Eliza Doolittle, Freddy Einsford-Hill, and Colonel Pickering have delighted audiences in the delightful play as well as Lerner and Lowe’s immortal musical, MY FAIR LADY. This culmination to the season will send our university and Erie communities joyously into the summer vacations.


    I love MY FAIR LADY, in spite of the travesty of its ending, which I am certain sends Shaw’s corpse into incessant tumbling each time it is performed. While the music and lyrics are near perfect, what makes me laugh are Shaw’s own characters, lines, and speeches which continue to instruct us about the power of nurture, the potential to change, and the importance of liberation from whatever stereotypes constrain us. This is a play for the ages, and at my age, I can think of no better end to my bucket list season!"

    Thursday-Saturday April 23-25 and April 30-May 2 at 8:00 pm

    Sunday, May 3 at 2:00 pm