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 SRU University Theatre presents Mendez' 'The Old Man's Wings' 



February 8, 2010

CONTACT: K.E. Schwab


SRU University Theatre present's Mendez' 'The Old Man's Wings'     


SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - An English translation of Melvin Mendez' play "The Old Man's Wings," completed by Deborah Cohen, Slippery Rock University professor of modern languages and cultures, will open the University theatre department's spring semester stage series.

           Cohen is chair of SRU's modern languages and cultures department.

          The Feb. 26-March 3 production in Miller Auditorium is directed by Laura Smiley, assistant professor of theatre. Curtains are at 8 p.m., except for the Feb. 28, 2 p.m. matinee.

          Mendez' work is set in Hope Sanitarium in Costa Rica and centers around an old man, Antonio, his fellow inmates and the asylum's staff. Convinced he can fly, Antonio, played by Zachary Nading, a senior theatre major from East Brady, shares his belief with his friends, leading to surprising results. The play is a moving tale of courage and determination against all odds and is designed to inspire audiences of all ages.

           Others in the cast are: Susan Marie Lemon from Grove City, as Elena; Luke Chamberlain from Geneva, Ohio, as the doctor; Matthew Palla from Greenville, as Matarrita; Alex Hollock from Butler, as Penelope Cruz; Ethan Rochow from West Middlesex, as Samson; Ciera Spencer from Harrisburg, as Delilah; Nick Benninger from Butler, as Encyclopedia Man; Thomasina Mike from Edinburg, as Radio Man; Ayaka Hikosaka from Tokyo, Japan, as Nina; and Kevin Moore from Aliquippa, as Luis. All are theatre majors, except for Palla, who is a communication major.

          Three SRU students will have multiple roles in the work, including Taylor Sokol, an exercise science major from Cranberry Township, who plays Inmate 3, Peter Avilas and a guard; Justin Sheetz, a creative writing major from Kutztown, who plays Inmate 1, a reporter and a guard; and Jessica Kowach, a theatre major from Hopewell, who plays a female inmate and Pam�la S�enz.

           Gordon Phetteplace, associate professor of theater, is the scenic designer, and Michael Boone, the department's technical director will handle technical duties. 

          Neen Carmichael from Erie is lighting designer; Kelly Myers from Natrona Heights is costume designer; Ronnie Nocera from New Castle is the sound designer; Krista Vogler from Hudson, N.H., is stage manager; Dan Cummins from Pittsburgh is assistant scenic designer; Megan Nye from Utica is properties mistress and assistant stage manager; and Heather Aldrich from Frederick, Md., is assistant stage manager. All are theatre majors.

          Tickets are $10 for the general public and $5 for students with ID. Tickets go on sale from the Miller Auditorium Box Office and the University Union Wednesday. Box office hours are noon to 1 p.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday and one hour before curtains. Reservations may also be made by calling  724.738.2645.


Slippery Rock University is Pennsylvania's premier public residential university. Slippery Rock University provides students with a comprehensive learning experience that intentionally combines academic instruction with enhanced educational and learning opportunities that make a positive difference in their lives.


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