Stepping Into the “Box” for an Out-of-the-Box Theatre

Published: April 01, 2015 | Author: Olyvia Meyer | Read Time: 2 minutes

Students create original theatre in SUU's blackboxThey call it the Blackbox - a place where once a month students gather to share with each other the joys of performance. Some read poetry, some dance, some act, and some just come to watch. However, in the Blackbox, every person shares at least one thing in common: a passion for performance.

These monthly gatherings in the Blackbox are organized by a student group on campus called Second Studio whose main mission is to provide students with an opportunity to express themselves through performance. Second Studio is entirely student-run and, in addition to facilitating the monthly Blackbox gatherings advertised as SUU Live, the organization has a number of staged theatre productions each semester.

Upcoming is the group’s production of The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, which will be performed in the Blackbox located in SUU’s Auditorium Theatre, April 1-4 and 6 at 7:30 p.m.

“We are just a group of students who are passionate about being on stage,” says Haile Merrill, a board member of Second Studio, “Most of us are taking 18 credits, practicing 6-8 hours a day for our majors, and working part-time jobs, but want nothing more than to be in front of people sharing our love for theatre with others.”

None of the student actors, producers, or set designers in Second Studio receive compensation or credit for their work on performances. “We do this because we love it,” says Merrill, who has acted in a number of productions.

Any person, regardless of major or experience, is welcome to audition for SUU Live or upcoming productions.

“I think it is so important that (on campus) we support each other in our different passions,” Merril explains, “It’s hard to leave a Second Studio performance without being impacted in one way or another. When someone loves what they’re doing, it’s apparent, and that’s what makes Second Studio so special. We all are here because we want to be here.”

Stepping outside of the box, for the last SUU Live of the semester, students will gather at Discovery Park across from the Cedar City Aquatics Center, for a unique night of celebration of performance. The event will take place April 28 at 10 p.m. and all are invited to attend.

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