Bloomsburg Players to Put on Commemorative Performance of W;t Honoring Dr. Gulley

By Robert Pellechio

The BU Players continue their season with a production of Margaret Edson’s Pulitzer Prize winning play, W;t. The play depicts the journey of Professor Vivian Bearing from her diagnosis to the end of her treatment for ovarian cancer. The play’s cast includes students of Bloomsburg University in addition to Bloomsburg Theatre Ensemble’s Elizabeth Dowd and former Bloomsburg University faculty member Dr. Mary Badami. The production is being mounted in memory of Dr. Ervene Gulley, chair and  professor in the English Department, who died July 25.

“There was a community movement to do a tribute to Dr. Gulley,” says Professor Michael Collins, the play’s director. “BTE [Bloomsburg Theatre Ensemble] was willing to do the show, but their season was already set.” In regards to casting a former colleague, Collins said, “Dr. Gulley was very supportive of the Theatre program, so we felt it was important to include former colleagues outside the production cast.”

Elizabeth Dowd, the play’s leading actress, says the biggest challenge of the show was the complexity of the ideas. When asked why people should come, she responded, “Because we’re all going to die. It’s glib, but true. This play is a difficult journey, but very hopeful.”

W;t opens Wednesday, Feb. 18 and closes Sunday Feb., 22. Tickets are $6 for adults, $4 for students and seniors, and free with a valid BU student ID. Performances are at the Alvina Krause Theatre, 226 Center St. in downtown Bloomsburg. Tickets are available at the door or at the Haas Center Box Office.

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