ICCC presents ‘The Election’

Production to take stage Thursday through Saturday

-Submitted photo A race for student body president is at the center of the Iowa Central Community College fall play called ‘‘The Election.’’ The cast includes, (front, from left), Karlee Jones, Calvin Clark and Hannah Amhof. In the second row are Ryan Douglas, Morgan Pratkelis and Max Halligan. Nick Nordtsrom, Daulton Rokes and Tristan Knudsen are in the back row.

Iowa Central Community College students will present their fall play taking on 21st century politics.

”The Election” is a comedy by Pulitzer Prize nominated playwright Don Zolidis, and produced with special arrangement by Playscripts, Inc.

It will be performed at 7 p.m. each day from Thursday through Saturday at Decker Auditorium at the college.

Zolidis is a former high school and middle school theater teacher as well as a former playwriting professor who grew up in Wisconsin. His work has received numerous honors, including the Princess Grace Award, an NEA grant, two Edgerton New Play Foundation awards, and a 2012 nomination for the Pulitzer Prize.

“I found this script a few years ago and put it in my ‘To-Direct-Someday’ pile, and as I re-read it this summer, I was amazed by how funny it was,” Teresa Jackson, the play’s director, said, “And funny without the bite of political satire which can often get mean-spirited and can clearly lean in favor of one political party over another. I loved that it poked fun at the inherent foibles which inevitably come when dealing with democracy, yet it also maintained a hopeful spirit.”

-Submitted photo When ‘‘The Election’’ opens this week as Iowa Central Community College’s fall play, the cast will include Michael Coates, front, and Thutam Nguyen, Zoey Aune and Leah Lierman in the second row. Andrea Rosendahl, Nathan Bentz and Peyton Sickler are in the next row while Brenden Hansen, Jonathon Schaffer and Dan Mindermann are in the back.

The script offers opportunities, not only for the leading characters, but for a multitude of ensemble roles as well. There are more than 45 speaking parts, the audience can expect to see.

Leading roles include: Mark Davenport, a senior, running for student body president and who is a very likable, average student just looking to improve his college application. Karl is one of Mark’s comical, sidekick friends who self-appointed himself as initial campaign manager.

Then there’s Gary McMaster, Mark’s slick professional campaign strategist is very tough and aggressive. He tends to wear expensive suits and sports absolutely no morals.

The opposing candidate is Christy Martin, also a senior who is running for student body president. She starts off as the nerdy girl with glasses who quickly transforms into a sleek, ambitious political machine who really knows how to captivate her audiences.

“If any in our area are weary of the noise, the chatter, the tweets, the talk about the tweets, the very word “tweet” itself, I can promise that the young people who will grace the stage of Iowa Central in ‘The Election’ will show that there is hope for the future,” Jackson said. “They are so incredible, these young people. They have an energy and a synergy together that makes directing and collaborating with them an absolute joy”

Jackson continued, “even in the midst of long rehearsal hours, they make fantastic use of their time. If they aren’t needed onstage, they run lines with each other in the foyer. They take notes for each other; they assist those who have been gone in getting caught up; they laugh and applaud for each other. It’s just a tremendously supportive atmosphere. I am so lucky to have a front-row seat to talent.”

“The larger cast is a lot harder to manage, but it’s also a lot more rewarding,” said Daulton Rokes, a rehearsal assistant and bit-part actor. “When the cast does nail the action Mrs. J wants, it’s so exciting. The overall mood is great because everyone is contributing to the energy.”

The performances will begin with a matinee only for area school children, but will be open for the public Thursday through Saturday with a 7:00 p.m. showing.

Tickets for the show cost $8 for adults and $5 for students. Iowa Central students are admitted into the show for free with their student ID. Tickets can be purchased at the Iowa Central Bookstore.