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Davis, California

Tuesday, October 26, 2021

“The Art of DAS-eption”

The Dead Arts Society (DAS) is back in business this season with a brand new showcase. Titled “The Art of DAS-eption,” this fall’s production will feature nine original standalone scenes, including an African dance piece. The performances will take place on Dec. 4 and 5 at Lab A in Wright Hall.

According to DAS president Kazia Hart, a fourth-year psychology major and theater minor, the fall showcase has a variety of sketches in store, with most centered on the element of deceit.

“For this showcase we have zombie apocalypses, romantic comedies, murder mysteries and more,” Hart said.

The theater club has been preparing for the showcase’s debut since the beginning of Fall Quarter. Preparation involves the devising of scenes, writing workshops, acting auditions and hours of rehearsal. Despite the intense preparation process, DAS offers students theater experience without the pressing time commitment typical of drama programs.

Lauren Anderson, a third-year socio-cultural anthropology major, acts in DAS to break from her academic curriculum.

“Being in DAS is a really fun, creative outlet,” Anderson said. “I’m really glad that it exists; I don’t know if I’d have time to do any theater courses here.”

For fourth-year computer science major Joel Fischbein, DAS allows him to pursue his studies and his pastimes.

“I’ve always wanted to [get involved in] acting, but never got to because I’d take other courses or electives,” Fischbein said. “[DAS] gives me a chance to get into acting and develop my skills, while also attending to other commitments.”

DAS welcomes students of all majors and all levels of experience. Students are in control of the trade they pursue in the club, whether it is acting, directing or writing. Any student interested in theater thus has the opportunity to gain skills in the field of their choosing.

For third-year Christina Muto, a clinical nutrition major, directing in DAS has allowed her to exercise her creativity in new ways.

“It’s very interesting working with [a piece written by somebody else], trying to make it your own and putting it into your vision,” Muto said.

Overall, DAS makes theater accessible to the entire UC Davis community. The club even offers features lacking in the Department of Theatre of Dance, such as an outlet for writing plays and getting them performed.

Leah Daugherty, a third-year English major, expressed appreciation for such opportunities provided by DAS.

“With DAS, I have learned playwriting techniques and made so many great friends,” Daugherty said.

Experiences in DAS also go beyond developing theater skills. For Alexandra Irvin, a third-year biological anthropology major, acting in DAS this quarter has brought her out of her shell.

“It’s fun at the end of the day to not have to worry about being a perfect student and just be a crazy person for an hour,” Irvin said.

Whether you prefer being behind the scenes, on stage or in the audience, DAS considers all aspects of the UC Davis student body.

To learn more about DAS and this fall’s showcase, please email deadartssociety@gmail.com.

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