Dysfunction Junction

DVD cover: “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?”The Northern Illinois University School of Theatre and Dance opens its 2015-2016 Mainstage Series season Thursday, Sept. 24, with a theatrical production of “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” by Edward Albee.

Faculty member Kendra Holton will direct the 20th century dramatic comedy that many critics have hailed as containing the best dialogue written for the American theater.

“The three hours of flawless dialogue and exquisite text will leave you wanting to know what’s next,” Holton said.

“Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” is the story of a very dysfunctional couple, each partner with problems of their own, who manage to draw another couple into the fray that is their relationship.

Only four performers will take the stage during the entire play, and all four student-actors are in their last year of training at the School of Theatre and Dance.

“They’re ready for a piece like this,” Holton said. “It’s one of the best American plays – 50 years later, and it’s still relevant.”

“Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” won both a Tony Award for Best Play and the New York Drama Critics’ Circle Award for Best Play in 1963. The play was last performed at NIU in the 1990s, and was revived on Broadway as recently as 2012.

As to why there is actually no character in the play named Virginia Woolf, Holton said, “Would you believe Edward Albee named the play after he saw the question, ‘Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?’ scribbled in a bathroom stall?”

This SoTD fall production runs Thursday, Sept. 24, through Sunday, Sept. 27, and from Thursday, Oct. 1, through Saturday, Oct. 3. All performances are in the Huntley Middle School auditorium, located at 1515 S. Fourth St. in DeKalb. Performances start promptly at 7:30 p.m. weekdays and Saturdays and at 2 p.m. Sunday and the second Saturday.

Tickets are $17 for adults, $14 for seniors and $9 for students, and are available online or by contacting the SOTD box office at (815) 753-1600 from noon to 6 p.m. weekdays.

For more information, call (815) 753-1600 or email sotdboxoffice@niu.edu.

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