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GMU PLAYERS PERFORMS BERT V. ROYAL'S "DOG SEES GOD: CONFESSIONS OF A TEENAGE BLOCKHEAD"

September 22, 2008
Contact: Press & Media Relations Coordinator (703-993-8794)

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GEORGE MASON UNIVERSITY’S

THEATER DEPARTMENT & GMU PLAYERS

ANNOUNCES

"DOG SEES GOD: CONFESSIONS OF A TEENAGE BLOCKHEAD"

BY BERT V. ROYAL

George Mason University’s Black Box Theater

Oct. 9-11, 2008 at 8 p.m.
Oct. 11-12, 2008 at 2 p.m.

Free preview on Oct. 8 at 8 p.m.

FAIRFAX, Va., Sept. 22, 2008Described by The New York Times as a “welcome antidote to the notion that the ‘Peanuts’ gang provides merely a slice of American cuteness,” “Dog Sees God: Confessions of a Teenage Blockhead” pushes teen angst to the limits. Written by Bert V. Royal, the play features the “Peanuts” gang as teenagers dealing with difficult issues. The GMU Players perform this unauthorized parody of Charles Schultz's “Peanuts” on Oct. 9-12 at the George Mason University Black Box Theater. The play is directed by Patrick Magill.

“Dog Sees God” centers on the cruelties teens inflict upon each other. Facing drug use, suicide, eating disorders, violence, rebellion and sexual identity the now adolescent gang confront these issues as their lives also collide with each other. “The way Royal builds on the foundation of Charles Schultz’s iconic comic strip actually results in a parody that’s also a stand-alone play apt to resonate even with anyone belonging to that small population segment unfamiliar with ‘Peanuts.’” (Curtain Up)

In the sprit of parodies, the characters’ names have been altered. Charlie Brown is now CB (played by Philip Dallmann), Sally is CB’s Sister (played by Buffy Billone), Pig-Pen is Matt (played by Michael Deveney), Linus is Van (played by Sean Ordway, Lucy is Van’s Sister (played by Rachel Heyd), Schroeder is Beethoven (played by Andrew Hawkins), Peppermint Patty is Tricia (played by Kelly Hennessy) and Marcie is Marcy (played by Beth Wherry). The play begins when CB’s beloved beagle has rabies and must be put to sleep. Questioning the existence of a higher power and an afterlife, CB seeks solace from his friends. However, the rest of the gang is too busy experimenting with drugs and alcohol, his sister has become a goth and his girlfriend has recently been institutionalized. A disillusioned CB finally finds peace through a new friend and confidant – an artistic student who is bullied by the rest of the gang. “Dog Sees God…” has won Broadway.com’s 2006 Audience Award for Favorite Off-Broadway Production and the 2006 HX Award for Best Play.

Royal began writing the play in January 2004 while he was working in New York City as associate and assistant casting director. He is currently signed on to write an original screenplay for Paramount, which tells the true story of two suburban Florida parents whose unruly teenagers drive them to go on strike in a tent on their front lawn.

The GMU Players is a dynamic faculty-directed student organization within the Theater Department. The Mainstage Series provides students the opportunity to work directly with Mason theater faculty and guest artists, while the Studio Series is selected, directed and designed by students. The GMU Players produce eight productions each season. Director Patrick Magill is currently a senior theater major and arts administration minor at George Mason University and president of the GMU Players. He has also worked with Theater of the First Amendment as stage manager, assistant director and production manager.

 

Tickets are $6. ($3 For students, seniors and GMU faculty/staff). Limited free tickets are available for GMU students. All performances are in the Black Box Theater (PAB A101). Free parking available in adjacent surface lots. Tickets may be purchased at the door one hour prior to the performance. To purchase tickets by phone, or for directions, please contact the Center for the Arts Box Office at (703) 993-8888. For information on group sales, please call Kimberly Schall at (703) 993-8600. For Information on the GMU Theater Department or the GMU Players, please call (703)-993-1120.

The College of Visual and Performing Arts exists to create an academic environment in which the arts may be considered both as individual disciplines and as interdisciplinary forms that strengthen each other. Believing that an education in the arts is deepened by regular contact with the work of distinguished visiting artists, the College draws on a variety of professional presenting and producing units where artists from across the country and around the world regularly perform, give master classes, work with students during extended residencies and interact with the community in a variety of other ways. These programs at the Center for the Arts Concert Hall, TheaterSpace, Galleries, Harris Theater and other venues, provide a diverse selection of challenging and entertaining cultural experiences for the University community, as well as Northern Virginia and the greater Washington, D.C. area. The College houses four academic departments: Art and Visual Technology, Dance, Music and Theater.

About George Mason University

George Mason University, located in the heart of Northern Virginia’s technology corridor near Washington, D.C., is an innovative, entrepreneurial institution with national distinction in a range of academic fields. With strong undergraduate and graduate degree programs in engineering, information technology, biotechnology and health care, Mason prepares its students to succeed in the work force and meet the needs of the region and the world. Mason professors conduct groundbreaking research in areas such as cancer, climate change, information technology and the biosciences, and Mason’s Center for the Arts brings world-renowned artists, musicians and actors to its stage. Its School of Law is recognized by U.S. News & World Report as one of the top 35 law schools in the United States.