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Bryan Theatre to bring a world through time to the stage

2017-18 season kicks off with Tom Wright’s mystery drama, ‘Picnic at Hanging Rock’

August 10, 2017

From chilling urban legends to comical family dilemmas, the Blinn College-Bryan Campus Theatre Arts Program is putting the spotlight on plays influenced from around the world for its 2017-18 season.

“This upcoming season features productions and playwrights who are very prominent on the world’s stage,” Blinn-Bryan Theatre Director Greg Wise said. “No matter the setting or characters, these plays translate into any time period, location, and culture. All audiences can relate to the various circumstances featured in each production.”

The season begins with Tom Wright’s chilling adaptation of Joan Lindsay’s classic Australian novel, “Picnic at Hanging Rock,” Oct. 19-22.

In this well-known Australian legend, three school girls and their teacher inexplicably vanish at a local geological formation known as Hanging Rock. Five performers will struggle to solve a mystery that has haunted audiences for decades.

Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Thornton Wilder’s two one-act plays – “The Happy Journey to Trenton and Camden” and “The Long Christmas Dinner” – run Nov. 30-Dec. 3. Keeping with the season’s theme of timeless tales, “The Happy Journey to Trenton and Camden” chronicles a family’s road trip to Camden, New Jersey, to visit their grown daughter, while “The Long Christmas Dinner” traverses 90 years of one family annually around the dinner table.

Next, Dario Fo’s political comedy “The Accidental Death of an Anarchist” runs Feb. 15-18 and tells the story of an Italian radical who shakes and stirs a police station into a frenzy.

The season concludes with Joshua Harmon’s critically-acclaimed savage comedy, “Bad Jews,” April 26-29. Three Jewish cousins engage in a verbal battle royale over a family heirloom following their grandfather’s death – a predicament that families throughout the ages can relate to.

“It is a very diverse season with a mysterious thriller, emotionally-charged nostalgic pieces, political satire, and humorous family drama,” Wise said.

Friday performances will be followed by “Friday Night Talkbacks,” in which the director and actors return to the stage to discuss the production and answer questions from the audience. Representatives from Texas A&M Hillel, a recognized Jewish student organization at Texas A&M University, will be at the April 27 “Friday Night Talkback” to provide insight into the Jewish family.

Wise will direct “Picnic at Hanging Rock,” “The Long Christmas Dinner,” and “The Accidental Death of an Anarchist,” while Theatre Instructor Jean Daniels will direct “The Happy Journey to Trenton and Camden” and “Bad Jews.” “Bad Jews” contains adult language and themes.

All performances will be hosted in the Blinn-Bryan Campus Student Center Theatre (map). Curtain times are 7:30 p.m. for Thursday, Friday, and Saturday shows, and 2 p.m. for Sunday performances.

Tickets are $5 for students and $10 for the general public. Seating is first-come, first-served. For questions regarding ticket reservations, contact the Box Office at 979-209-8100. Tickets also will be available at the door.