Charles Mee’s “Big Love” kicks off Georgia College’s fall theater season on Wednesday, September 27. It tells the humorous story of a large wedding ceremony gone awry while also confronting complex issues such as the polarizing nature of gender roles.
“You’re going to want to see this,” said student director Trey Rutherford as he gestured toward the stage.
About 20 performers began a sultry tango number, nailing each swing of the hips as they seduced their partners. He proudly noted that the actors learned the dance the previous night.
“Big Love” offers surprises that Rutherford said are sure to hold the audience at the edge of their seats. The play emphasizes issues that speak to the core of human existence, addressing topics like gender relations, tradition and power.
“It takes issues such as freedom and conflicts between men and women and throws them onstage,” director Kathy Newman said.
“Big Love” is a challenge to the actors. They must use grandiose movements exaggerated by passion while executing an authentic performance and effectively connecting with the audience.
According to Newman, “Big Love” offers a world of extremes, from anguish and passion to hilarity and poignancy.
Audience members may walk away with more questions than answers, since the piece serves to open the mind and initiate dialogue.
Characters represent various degrees of masculinity and femininity, each with his or her own set of desires and personal truths.
“‘Big Love’ plays into gender roles, family, and tradition,” said senior Will Anderson, who plays Constantine, a determined young man who adheres strongly to tradition. “It offers different perspectives on what it means to be a man or a woman.”
The show is a spectacle in itself, featuring balcony rappelling, dance numbers and fight choreography. Audience members should expect the unexpected from this highly physical performance.
Senior Madison Smith, who plays Olympia, said she finds value in “Big Love’s” message of seeking the balance between power and love.
The play turns the conventional notion of marriage on its head, reflecting on freedom within the bounds of a relationship as well as on relations between the sexes within a greater social context.
“It’s breaking gender norms and telling women that they can have their own expectations and ambitions,” Smith said.
“Big Love” tackles issues that have impacted the human experience for centuries. Its may catch audience members off guard as they recognize themselves in the characters onstage.
“I think it’s going to slap some people in the face,” Smith said. “There’s no way someone can leave without being affected.”
When: Sept. 29-30, Oct. 2-3 at 7:30 p.m., Oct 1 at 2:00 p.m.
Where: Russell Auditorium
Tickets $5 for students, $10 for non-GC students, $14 general admission
Buy tickets at gcsutickets.com or at the door!