Preview show: Wednesday, Feb. 25 at 8 p.m.
Feb. 26 to Feb. 28, 8 p.m.
Mar. 1, 2 p.m.
Mar. 5 to Mar. 7, 8 p.m.
Mar. 8, 2 p.m.
Tickets are $9 with a student ID, $12 general admission. Preview show tickets are a dollar off. Tickets can be purchased at the Freeborn Box Office
Studio 301 isn’t a room hidden somewhere on campus, nor is it a professional acting group located in Sacramento. It’s something much more interesting than that – Studio 301 is a student-run theater group that performs two different plays each year. The club receives nearly all of its funding from ticket sales and fundraisers and does not rely upon the UC Davis theatre and dance department for help organizing the performances or raising money.
This quarter Studio 301 will present Christopher Durang’s comedy Beyond Therapy from Feb. 25 until March 8. Tickets are $9 for students and $12 general admission.
Alison Stevenson – a sophomore English major, Studio 301 publicity coordinator and the director of Beyond Therapy – said that the club decided to perform a comedy in order to give student actors an alternative to the T&D department productions.
“We put on student-run productions that students decide on. Students are pretty much every aspect of the play,” Stevenson said. “For example, next quarter the T&D department is going to perform the musical Oklahoma. As a result, we’re going to do something besides a musical, so people who aren’t singers can perform as well.“
As for this quarter, Stevenson said she proposed Beyond Therapy to Studio 301 because the T&D department isn’t presenting any classic theatrical comedies for its 2008-2009 season.
Beyond Therapy is a play about two characters, Bruce and Prudence, who meet through a personal ad, Stevenson said.
“It’s perfect for students because the play includes all different levels of humor, from more sophomoric, college sex humor to smart and witty historical references,” she said. “I also think Christopher Durang is one of the greatest playwrights.“
Studio 301 president and junior theater and English double major Allison Minick said that the club was founded over five years ago but underwent major changes last year.
“In fall of 2007, we increased the professionalism and everything else in the club,” Minick said. “In the past, Studio 301 [was] just a social club or only a production company. Today we’re trying to give both to students.“
Past Studio 301 performances include The Last Five Years, Cabaret and The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged). Last year was a successful year for the studio, as they performed Clark Gesner’s musical comedy You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown and a night of one-act plays based on unpublished and previously unperformed works written mostly by students, Minick said.
Minick’s love of theater and performance convinced her that joining Studio 301 was the right decision.
“I ran for president because I saw how well Joe Ferreira, the previous club president, brought everyone together with his professionalism. It’s something I wanted to be a part of.“
Stevenson said she sees the club as an important group on campus.
“We are proof to the community and other students that it is possible to be a student organization and put on professional shows,” she said. “There’s a great deal of determination in our group and it’s amazing how professional our shows end up considering that they are entirely student-run. It requires a lot of unity.“
Studio 301 treasurer and senior theater major Kate McGrath said the group provides an opportunity for any student – regardless of their major – to be involved in a theatrical production.
“We try to get people involved from all different departments doing different tasks like design and stage craft,” she said. “We are open to the whole school and to anyone who might not have enough time to work on a theatre department production.“
For Studio 301, dedication allows the productions to be successful.
“Since Studio 301 is all volunteer, we’ll take anyone who is willing to work hard,” McGrath said. “It’s a great way to start getting experience in theater and a great place to meet really fun people.“
ZACK FREDERICK can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.