The Appalachian State University Department of Theatre and Dance proudly presents its first production of the season, the 2019 First Year Showcase.

The production takes place in I.G. Greer Studio Theatre on the university campus with 7 p.m. performances from Thursday, September 26 through Saturday, September 28 and a 2 p.m. matinee on Sunday, September 29. Tickets are $7 for students and $12 for adults and available in person at the Schaefer Center for the Performing Arts box office Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., by phone at 800-841-ARTS (2787), or 828-262-4046 or online at theatreanddance.appstate.edu.

First Year Showcase is an annual season opener for the Department of Theatre and Dance. The showcase is open to all first-year students who are interested in majoring or minoring in any of the six different degree concentrations within the department. This is an inclusive production incorporating anyone who wants to be involved. Appalachian students are responsible for the creation and performance of the show, which this year is focused around the theme of "Stasis and Change."

Fall 2019 boasts the largest incoming class of theatre and dance students in the history of the department with a record breaking 75 newcomers. The production will showcase the talents of 57 different performers including 33 dancers and 24 theatre artists. Associate Professor Sherone Price, assisted by dance faculty member Laurie Atkins, is coordinating the dance aspect of the production with the theatre component under the direction of Lecturers Dr. Gina Grandi and Susan Cato-Chapman.

While Grandi and Cato-Chapman are working together to direct the show, "The students make the final call as to content," said Cato-Chapman. After rehearsals, they receive student input on how to improve the show based on their opinions of the scenes, dialogue, staging, and context. They noted that the rehearsal process is a crucial part of the learning experience. Grandi stated, "It's based on a cycle of exploring, creating, and rehearsing leading up to the performance."

In addition to theatre, there are five dance pieces interspersed throughout each performance. Five choreographers, including three students and two faculty members, are creating works that incorporate the overarching theme of "stasis/change." Price's goal for First Year Showcase is to provide to everyone "an opportunity to have a positive first experience," while providing students with a chance to meet faculty and their new classmates while in the process of showcasing their talent.

The I. G. Greer Studio Theatre is located on the east side of campus underneath I.G. Greer Hall at 401 Academy Street in Boone, NC. The entrance to the studio theatre is the wide red door on the lower northeast side of the building. Parking on campus in staff/faculty spots is available after 5 p.m. daily, with the Rivers Street parking deck and the College Street parking deck near Belk Library and Information Commons available after 5:30 p.m.