A desire for exploration of the unknown on Belmont’s campus brings journey, suspense and imagination to the stage, in the theater department’s newest production: “On The Verge.”
“The world is something worth exploring and inside of ourselves we have the potential to discover and embrace and revel in this world. With some good friends and with belief in yourself, you should venture and go on adventures,” said director and theater professor at Belmont, Nettie Kraft.
“On The Verge”, a 1987 fictional comedy written by Eric Overmyer, shares with its audiences the journeys of three lady explorers: Mary, Fanny and Alex. These ladies, encounter diverse beings while exploring through and beyond different time periods and locations.
A single actress plays each diverse being the ladies encounter in the production to represent common opportunities and threats from life’s journey.
“I love that this show is a journey through the imagination. It’s very theatrical, it’s not about realism: It’s about how powerful our imaginations are,” said Kraft. “The script and the vocabulary are amazing; the wording is absolutely beautiful.”
The ladies explore time periods from 1955 to the late nineteenth century. The play, which focuses on the importance of descriptive language in creating imagination, uses pop-culture references from each time period.
Kraft believes that the show, while fictional, directly relates to the lives of Belmont students.
“This is about our journeys. You can go on a mental, physical and spiritual journey in life and college is all of these things,” said Kraft. “You can’t always know the destination to your journey. You could start out as a freshman biology major and end up with a theater education degree; you never know and that’s OK.”
In Kraft’s opinion, today’s youth are not given enough opportunity to explore.
“There’s too much pressure on your generation to have it figured out and I don’t think that’s fair,” said Kraft. “We need to give ourselves permission to explore, to make mistakes, to learn from it, and then to go back or forward and try again. College is about the journey and so is this show.”
Along with the inspiration of exploration, Kraft also hopes the show will help prepare Belmont students for life after Belmont.
“Students at Belmont are so intelligent and the great majority has such good hearts. I think it can be scary at the end of their four years,” said Kraft. “I want this play to tell them it’s ok to embrace the unknown.”
“On The Verge” reminds audiences to embrace the unknown. In the words of Kraft:
“The universe is beautiful and you are a part of it. Enjoy it.”
The theater department at Belmont University will continue to perform the play “On The Verge” Feb. 21-22 at 7:30 p.m. and Feb. 23-24 at 4 p.m.