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‘Stop Kiss’ addresses violence: Director hoping to open discussion about hate crimes

February 27, 2015

Michelle Ravel / The Courier - Sophomore Rowan Williamson and freshman Galen Hughes rehearse a scene for "Stop Kiss," which premiered Thursday night.

The Monmouth College spring semester of productions is starting this weekend. “Stop Kiss” opens this Thursday at 7:30 p.m. The show runs from Thursday through Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and a matinee at 2:00 p.m. All of the shows will be held in the Fusion Theater, located in downtown Monmouth. Admission is $4 with a MC student ID, $5 for a student without an ID and $6 for adults.

The play is set in the 1990s. Main character Callie Pax is a traffic reporter in New York City whose life gets shaken up by Sara, a third grade teacher from St. Louis. Sara shows Callie a different way of seeing life. After a violent attack the two girls are forced to face a world of labels and the confusing consequences of an innocent kiss.

“Stop Kiss” is almost completely designed by students, with junior Natalie Stortoni directing.

Stortoni chose “Stop Kiss” because she “noticed that the rest of the theatre department season featured male leads. I really wanted to highlight the talented women in the department. Last spring when I was looking at different scripts to pitch to the faculty to fill the student directed show slot in the season, I ran across ‘Stop Kiss’ and fell in love. I wasn’t sure that it was something I wanted to direct at Monmouth, but then I noticed a lot of people posting about questioning their sexuality on Monmouth Confesses and I thought that ‘Stop Kiss’ might be a perfect fit.”

The actors featured in “Stop Kiss” are Rowan Williamson, Galen Hughes, Cole Downey, Zac Brand, Adam Duffield, Marilyn Carteno and Amanda Bowman.

Sophomore Rowan Williamson plays the role as Callie Pax. She hopes that this show will impact the campus and the community by sparking discussion on labels and the violence of hate crimes. She also said, “I really hope that the audience will fall in love with the characters and will accept people’s differences.”

Callie’s counterpart of the show is Sara. Sara is played by freshman Galen Hughes.

“(I am) so happy to be a part of the show.” Hughes said, “I feel blessed to be a part of it. I love the cast and crew so much.”

Following all of the performances, senior Mackenzie Mahler will be leading post-performance discussion. During the show Mahler will be running a full-functioning coffee house.

“The audience should know to come in with an open mind and watch the characters fall in love and watch the consequences of their actions,” said Williamson.

Brittany Shumaker
Contributing Writer

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