Campus hosts one-act plays

Misty Severi, Reporter

The theater department of Bakersfield College hosted two one-act plays on April 27 in the Black Box Theatre.The first play, “You’re Nobody ‘Til Somebody Loves You” was written by former BCstudent Nicholas David Meise and was directed by Ryan Lee.

The story revolves around four central characters: James, played by Beck Elliott, Olivia, played by Karisma Normandin, Charlotte, played by Alyssa Galvez, and Allen, played by Morgan Crite. James, the depressed but aspiring writer, is the boyfriend of Charlotte, a woman trying to break into the acting world. Olivia, wife of “general manager” Allen, is a woman who secretly wanted to be an actress but instead settled for the reliable job of nursing.

The story begins with Olivia and Allen seemingly getting along as they prepare for Olivia’s best friend from high school, Charlotte, to visit with her boyfriend. But the viewer quickly realizes as the play continues that Olivia and Allen are far from happy, as Olivia feels that she and her daughter are being neglected by her husband, who appears to be a workaholic.

There becomes this love triangle in the play, when they talk about sleeping with another member of the party, but in the end the couples all remain the same.

The play had a lot of humor and adult content in it, but overall was an interesting and funny story, according to audience members. “I feel like the characters are interesting,” began audience member Mallory Wilson, “and there were many moments that I was laughing so hard that I thought I was going to pee in my pants.”

The second play of the night was called “Bridges,” written by former BCProfessor and Levan Center director Jack Hernandez, and directed by theater professor Kimberly Chin.

There were only two characters in this play, the snarky homeless man who reads philosophy, played by Morgan Von Sydow, and the aspiring young writer who was on the verge of committing suicide, played by Ryan Lee.

The play, which was based on Hernandez’s son’s suicide, is fast paced, with a lot of back and forth between the two characters, as the homeless man tries to convince the young man to continue living. But every time the audience became hopeful that maybe the young man’s mind was changing, he’d go right back to the edge of the bridge and think about jumping off.

“It kept me on the edge of my seat the entire time,” said audience member Tanya Clark, “because you really want him (the homeless man) to change the guy’s mind and for him to live. But then he kept changing his mind again, and again, and for it to end with him dying even though you’re rooting for him to live. . . It’s heartbreaking.”

There was a short question and answer session following the plays where all the actors and both writers came out to answer the questions.

“Olivia was hard because she’s falling in love with James,” Normandin said about her character Olivia, “and yet she’s married to Allen, who’s kind of neglecting her. It got confusing and trying to figure out when exactly she’s falling in love with James when Ryan (the director) wanted me to fall in love with him earlier in the play, like right at the beginning.”

In a private interview, Hernandez said, “It (“Bridges”) ends on an optimistic note I think, that’s what I meant. There’s the shock and the sadness of a young man taking his life, but there’s also the affirmation at the end with the homeless man you know, that we got to stay around and roll that rock.”