AU Press Releases

Performing Arts stages gender-bender comedy production

The Alfred University (AU) Division of Performing Arts presents playwright Jane Martin’s “Anton in Show Business,” Wednesday through Saturday, Nov. 14-17, in the C.D. Smith III Theatre, Miller Performing Arts Center complex. Curtain up is 8 p.m.

The show is directed by Alfred University Theater Professor Becky Prophet.

Tickets are required; general admission is $5. To purchase or reserve tickets, please contact the Performing Arts Box Office by e-mail at, visit the Web box office at, or call 607.871.2828.

So what happens when a young, naïve Texas actress, a depressed record-holder for the most productions in unpaid positions in New York City, and a renewed, remade Hollywood soap opera actress collaborate to perform one of the most renowned classical plays? In this “exhilarating” new comedy, three very unique actresses set out to successfully perform Chekhov’s “The Three Sisters.” Using both irony and humor, critically acclaimed Martin tackles big questions of art, society, and gender.

The student cast includes Kate Truini of Roxbury, CN as Holly/Masha; Keriann Bellamy of Olean, as Lisabette/Irina; Ralph Brightly performed by Lucy Morris from Winchester, United Kingdom; Wikewich played by Nate Gibson, Crystal Lake, IL.

Also: costume designer Jackey, played by Mark Anderson of Granby, CT; hapless country singer Ben Shipwright, performed by Hannah Weidner, Syracuse; stage manager T-Anne played by Ashley Felix of Brooklyn; insightful critic Joby, played by Dana Harris of Alpine, NY; tobacco lobbyist Don Blount, played by J.J. Davis, Syracuse; and a cynical Texas millionaire played by Casey Hall of Bath.

The costumes for “Anton in Show Business” are designed by senior Allison Burrell from Buffalo. Marketa Fantova, AU professor of theater design, serves as lighting and scenery designer; she is assisted by Lanina Roby. Sophomore Owens “OJ” Shepard of Rochester is props master, while Performing Arts Division members Zach Hamm and Debra MacCrea, serve as technical director and costume shop manager, respectively.

Freshman Rebecca Cooner of Gasport is stage manager and receives assistance from Sophomore Artemas Steere of Almond. Director Prophet is assisted by Anderson.

Prophet is an alumnus of Alfred University, where she received a bachelor of arts degree in English. She earned a master’s degree and Ph.D. from the University of Michigan. She has acted, directed, and taught in New York, Massachusetts, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Atlanta.

Fantova earned a bachelor of arts degree equivalent in industrial and graphic design from the Vaclav Hollar Art School, her technical certification in architecture from Czech Technical University, a received a bachelor of fine arts degree in scenography from DAMU Theatre Academy of Music Arts, all in Prague, Czechoslovakia. She also earned a master of fine arts degree in scene design from Wayne State University, Detroit. She has served as costume, scene, and lighting designer for over two dozen shows throughout the course of her career.

Hamm earned a bachelor of arts degree in architectural studies and art from Connecticut College, New London, and a master of fine arts degree in technical theater production from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. He co-authored an article, “Snowing Leaves,” which was exhibited at the 2007 United States Institute for Theatre Technology Stage Expo & Conference.