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'The Odd Couple' attracts crowds

By Hillary Akers
Around the Town Editor

March 15, 2012


The University Theatre drew crowds each night for its production of "The Odd Couple: Female Version" Feb. 22 through Feb. 25 in the Givens Performing Arts Center.

Dr. Chet Jordan, director of Theatre, expressed his satisfaction with the work of actors and production staff.

"A group that works as hard as they did makes my job easy," he said. "I love the student plays because I get to work with bright people who commit themselves."

Actresses Stephanie Varela, as Olive, and Nikki Frabott, as Florence, played friends who learn a great deal about their differences when they start living together. Varela's laid-back and messy character in combination with Frabott's uptight and tidy character initiated many humorous and relatable scenes.

Photo by Hillary Akers
Nikki Frabott, left, and Stephanie Varela take on the lead roles of Florence and Olive in "The Odd Couple: Female Version."
Varela and Frabott were joined by Mel Marlowe (Renee), Alexis Locklear (Vera), Dorianna Curry (Mickey) and Claudia Warga (Sylvie) who playedfriends engaged in the ups and downs of their lives through frequent game nights.

Jamaal Anthony, as Manolo Costazuela, and Rakeem Lawrence, as Jesus Costazuela, drew laughs from the audience as very earnest and well-mannered Spanish brothers living in the same building.

The production drew a full house of approximately 104 the first three nights and about 70 on Saturday night. There were also about 20 in the audience during the preview on Feb. 21.

Audience seating was set up on the backside of the normal GPAC stage with the rest of the stage taken up by the set.

"It was an intimate show," Dr. Jordan said. "For this production the smaller space was better."

Chancellor Kyle R. Carter and wife, Sarah Carter, were also in atten- dance and enjoyed the play.

"I thought it was wonderful, clever and well-acted," Sarah Carter said. "It was a hoot!"

"It was a lot of fun and showed a lot of energy," Chancellor Carter said.

Photo by Hillary Akers
Stephanie Varela as Olive gets ready for her date with humorous Spanish brothers portrayed by Jamaal Anthony and Rakeem Lawrence.


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