SE Campus performs radio take on Christmas tale Wonderful Life
By Marley Malenfant/se news editor
SE Campus is bringing back the radio star with It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play by Joe Landry.
SE associate professor of speech and drama Pert Durapau, who is directing the play, said eight actors will play 50 various characters.
The play takes place on Christmas Eve 1946 in a studio in Bedford Falls, N.Y.
“The actors have to use multiple voices for the different characters they play,” she said. ”There will be singers who will do the commercials live because that’s how they were done at that time.”
SE student Ryan Jackson plays five characters including Freddie Filmore, a star radio show host.
“You couldn’t go into the film business without Freddie Filmore because he had all the connections even though he was in radio,” he said.
Jackson said Durapau encouraged him to play the multiple characters.
“I was throwing out these voices to Pert, and she liked it,” he said. “So she was like, ‘Let’s have you do this one and have you do that one.’ I play Mr. Welch, Harry Bailey, Mr. Potter and this Italian guy named Martini.”
SE student Preston Elkins, who plays the lead character George Bailey, said he’s an American dreamer.
“He never got to leave the town like he always wanted, but he always finds a purpose in his life,” he said. “Everything he does benefits the community. He’s a standup guy.”
SE student Stephanie Henry plays six characters including Rose Bailey, George’s mom. She said she wants George to stay in the city and get married.
“I want George to settle down with Mary because she seems like wifey material,” she said.
SE student Taylor Swift plays the stage manager and live Foley artist. Swift said the challenge of the Foley artist is to have the sounds identical to the era they’re depicting.
“The sound effects of the show add more to the show like a 3-D effect,” she said. “Whenever they mention snow, I make a sound for that. If a telephone rings, I use a telephone sound effect. I don’t just press a machine that makes sounds. It has to sound like it came from the ’40s.”
Performances are free for all TCC students, faculty and staff. Tickets are $3 for non-TCC students and $6 for the general public.
Showtimes are 8 p.m. with 2 p.m. matinees Friday and Saturday Dec. 2-4 in the Roberson Theatre.
Call 817-515-3599 for reservations.