Theater department produces first show of the semester

Sarah Wilczynski, Reporter

The SUNY Buffalo State theater department’s production of Stephen Sondheim’s A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, directed by Donn Youngstrom, opened Thursday, Oct. 8. The show was described by audience members as “hilarious”  and “will have you laughing and singing along.”

If you missed the first few shows, theatergoers and comedy lovers can catch it again Oct. 15 and 16 at 8 p.m., and October 17 at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. at Upton Hall in the Warren Enters Theatre.

The show takes place on a street in Rome, and tells the story of a slave, Psuedolus, who attempts to get a girl, Phelia (Molly Bader), for his master, Hero (Dan Torres), in exchange for his freedom. While in the process, he encounters slamming doors, mistaken identities and plot twists and turns. The perfectly-cast production, the obvious attention to detail and the family-like connection the cast has is really what ties the show together and makes it so enjoyable.

Senior theater major Steven Ott plays the boisterous role of Marcus Lycus.

“Just the title says it’s hilarious,” Ott said. “If I had a contract for this show, I could keep doing this for years.” Ott said.

Jeremy Catania, also a senior theater major, can be seen in the role of Hystarium. He described the show as being “very light” and “not very intellectual.”

“There are a lot of horrible things going on in this world, we want people to just forget about those things for a while and be entertained,” Catania said.

There is a visible sense of community within the theater department. Ott says this is because of the dedicated faculty and staff who always give 150 percent.

“We are all in this together,” Ott said. “There is so much talent in the department all from different backgrounds.”

If a person comes into the department wanting to do musical theater, the faculty assures the student not only excels in that, but in all aspects of theater.

“They really force you to stretch your boundaries,” Catania said. “You get to use every ounce of what you learned.”

Even though the show is light-hearted and comical, Ott still believes it has the timeless message to “be yourself.”

For tickets and additional information on the theater department and upcoming shows, visit


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