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“Bus Stop” opens fall season for CSU Theatre and Dance

BY KELSEY SMITH

Sept. 27, 2012

The Cleveland State University Department of Theatre and Dance will kick off their fall season with the Tony-nominated play “Bus Stop.”

The drama was written by William Inge in 1955 and is loosely based off a man and woman he encountered on a bus. The play earned four Tony nominations in 1956.

“He based it off a situation that he saw in real life. He saw a cowboy and this really pretty girl on a bus one day and it went from she was trying to avoid him to she left with him, and then wrote this play based off of that. He added more characters and, obviously, more to their lives,” said Sarah Moore, a senior playing Cherie.

“Bus Stop” spans 36 hours when a snowstorm forces five bus passengers to seek shelter in a diner outside of Kansas City.

“All the characters are longing for something, whether it’s companionship, freedom, adulthood, or new experiences,” said Nicholas Chokan, a junior playing the part of Virgil.

The cast rehearses six days a week for four hours a day. The show itself is very group-based, with most of the characters on stage for a majority of the play.

“There’s leads, but everyone has their very specific role that’s integral to the story,” said Dan Rand, the play’s stage director.

The biggest draw, however, might be that the story is one that many people are able to relate to. The play focuses a lot on loneliness and how to make a connection with people around you.

“It’s a lot about loneliness and how do you find your way to connect with people who mean something to you and a life that means something to you, and that’s really what college is about,” said Corey Atkins, director of the play.

“Bus Stop” runs from Oct. 11-21, 2012 at the Allen Theatre Second Stage.

The rare photo of William Inge was taken in 1954 by Carl Van Vechten.