“The Importance of Being Earnest” closed with a final, sold out performance and record-setting attendance for the IWU Theatre Guild. On Saturday night, November 19, the cast members took their final bows, and the crew cleared the stage for the last time. The show was a great success, breaking the Box Office attendance record for a play which was formerly held by “Romeo and Juliet,” which the Theatre Guild opened for two weekends in November 2010. There was no time for lingering, however. Immediately after the performance, cast and crew began to disassemble the “Earnest” set and began building the set for “The Glass Menagerie” (February 23-25 & 27-29).
One highlight of many of the IWU Theatre Guild’s productions is feedback from a KC-ACTF respondent. KC-ACTF stands for the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival, which takes place each year in January. Professors from other universities also participating in ACTF come, watch the production, and give a critique for the consideration of the cast and crew. The respondent may also
nominate up to two of the actors for the Irene Ryan Scholarship. The competition for this scholarship is one of the main events at the American College Theatre Festival, and a nomination for a role looks prestigious on an acting resume.
The KC-ACTF respondent for “The Importance of Being Earnest,” a theatre professor from Purdue University, attended the matinee performance on Saturday, November 12 and then shared his critique of the set, lights, sound, costumes, hair and makeup, and acting in a talkback with the cast and crew. The following week, the recipients of the Irene Ryan nominations were announced by
Katelyn Presnell, the assistant director and production/stage manager: Adam Fike and Justine Schaefer received nominations for their portrayals of Algernon Moncrieff and Gwendolen Fairfax.
“I was pleasantly surprised,” said Schaefer. “I am planning on competing, and obviously I’m really nervous about that, but I’m looking forward to it. I think it’s going to be a fantastic adventure.” Fike and Schaefer join the nominees from shows in the past year. Phil Herbruck, also a member of the “Earnest” cast, received a nomination last February for his portrayal of Matt Friedman in “Talley’s Folly,” Elizabeth Potter and Rachael Stuckey each received nominations for their portrayals of Jo and Amy March in “Little Women” last March, and Cody Konschak recently received a nomination for his portrayal of Mitch Albom in “Tuesdays with Morrie” in October.