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Romance with a little physics comes to Black Box

While some romantic plays require previous historical or artistic knowledge, few require an understanding of quantum physics.

Luckily, that understanding comes secondary in Penny Penniston’s romantic comedy “Now, Then, and Again,” which will be presented at Belmont’s Black Box Theatre from April 13-22.

“People should come give this show a try,” said Jenna Pryor, who plays Ginny, an undergraduate physicist who gets comedically tangled in a love triangle with her colleague and new husband. “This is a good show to ease into the world of theater because it’s really light-hearted and a romantic comedy with a little bit of everything for everybody. It’s really the big band theory meets “The Vow.””

Just as quantum physics is new to the Belmont stage, so are almost all the actors to the university.

“Having an [almost] all freshman cast was not a choice we made beforehand,” said Paul Gatrell, the show’s director. “Truthfully, the freshman that auditioned were the best for their role.”

The only upperclassman in the cast is senior Luke Hatmaker, who plays Chris, Jenny’s husband.

“At first when Michael [Joiner] and I discovered we would be carrying this show, it was a little daunting,” said Pryor. “But now I’m really excited and feel so lucky that we get to work with someone like Luke who is so seasoned and talented. At the end of the day we’re all just actors trying to do our job and put on a good show.”

Although the freshmen aren’t as seasoned as the older actors, Gatrell sees it as a positive experience.

“Its been fun working with freshman because they’re so fresh and bright eyed and they’re very eager to do the right thing and to do the work,” said Gatrell. “I’ve really gotten the chance to get them to understand what it takes for them to be a professional so you can map out exactly what the expectations are.”

In fact, the most difficult aspect of the show may have been its content rather than the actors’ level of experience.

“It’s been a challenge as an actress because the show is based off of quantum physics where the waves travel in both directions. So the first act it goes one way on one time line and then in the second act the same actions happens in another time line,” said Pryor.

While some lines in the first act are identical in wording to lines in the second act, the meaning is completely flipped.

Even though the science is confusing, both Gatrell and Pryor agree that “Now, Then, and Again” is a refreshing way to end the semester.

“No tragedy this time, just a little love, comedy, and quantum physics,” said Gatrell.

Belmont students receive free admission and convocation credit for attending the show. The show will be performed at 7:30 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays and at 2 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays.

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