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Warren Gerds/Critic at Large: UW-Oshkosh Theatre and media departments team for virtual project

Critic At Large

‘Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike’ and ‘The Glass Menagerie’

OSHKOSH, Wis. (WFRV) – University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh Theatre and Radio Television Film have an interesting, special project going.

They have joined to create virtual productions of two fully produced plays.

Normally in fall, the Radio Television Film students cover sports events, which this year have been disrupted by the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic.

Plan B is providing something new to our area – the experience of recording the plays “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike” and “The Glass Menagerie.”

One pay-to-view ticket is good for both plays, which are available now to Dec. 6. Info: https://uwosh.edu/theatre/box-office/.

Each play is filled with thought, one comic and one somber.

The funny title of “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike” goes with Christopher Durang’s story of three simmering siblings, one who happens to be a star.

The comedy that is kind of thoughtful and kind of saucy has been popular in other productions in Northeastern Wisconsin.

“The Glass Menagerie” is an American classic by Tennessee Williams.

It is the story of a fragile family, especially the brittle young woman in it.

This is an opportunity to see a local take on a play that launched Tennessee Williams into literary fame.

The plays were recorded without an audience in the university’s renamed Theatre Arts Center.

Some rehearsals took place in the hallways of the center.

Students followed COVID-19 protocol, so they performed masked.

Directors Merlaine Angwall and Richard Kalinoski shaped the plays as normal with sets and costumes – and rehearsals and more rehearsals.

The theater seats 498 persons, but now the audience is as large as the Internet.

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