Hinman Production Company’s first show of the semester, “The Nerd,” by Larry Shue and co-directed by Anthony DeFeo and Michaela Pavia, will be performed in the Hinman Commons at 8 p.m. on March 22, 23 and 24 with an additional matinee performance at 2 p.m. on March 24.
“The Nerd” is a comedy about an architect named Willum Cubbert who lacks motivation regarding both his job and love life. After being injured in Vietnam and rescued on the battlefield by an anonymous soldier, the rescuer, who Willum never actually met, shows up years later at a dinner party. His unexpected appearance causes chaos. Hysterical comedy ensues as Willum and his two friends, Tansy and Axel, try to calm the situation.
Ruben Martinez, a junior double-majoring in economics and philosophy, politics and law, plays Willum Cubbert.
“As the main character, he’s important because most of what happens in the show directly influences his later actions and emotions,” Martinez said. “In terms of twists and turns, he’s one to keep an eye out for.”
The ridiculous, bumbling “nerd,” Rick Steadman, is being played by Ross Pohling, a junior majoring in physics.
“My character is incredibly obnoxious and has absolutely no social filter,” Pohling said. “Rick is the source for many of the jokes and also catalyzes the plot, as his presence is the obstacle that Willum and his friends must overcome.”
Pohling believes “The Nerd” will entertain the audience with its constant comedic moments and even insinuated that the crowd will be laughing so much, it may become physically painful.
“There are some plays that really inspire audiences and ask important questions about life and society,” Pohling said. “‘The Nerd’ is not one of those plays. But even though this is a hysterical comedy, the script is expertly crafted with a richness of details. This is the kind of play you will want to see more than once.”
Both DeFeo and Pavia have switched roles within Hinman Production Company and have “smoothly” transitioned from actors to directors this semester.
“This is my eighth HPC production and I’ve worked with many directors and picked up directorial techniques from each of them,” said Pavia, a junior majoring in linguistics. “It was interesting for me to see the process of putting on a show from a different perspective. As an actor, I had never given much thought to what went on behind the scenes and as a director I am very aware of all of those components to putting on a show.”
DeFeo, a senior majoring in linguistics, thinks directing is a completely different process.
“To my surprise, I feel that I have much more control when I’m on stage acting than I do directing,” DeFeo said. “Also, now I have to be mindful of all the behind the scenes and tech work like sound and lighting.”
Both directors are excited for the play to premiere on Thursday and are confident in their cast’s performance.
“They have been working so hard and have come very far,” Pavia said. “They have each grown individually as actors and have been fabulous at discovering new things about their characters.”
And DeFeo thinks students will find the show entertaining.
“If you enjoy the theater, cottage cheese, wild pigs, architecture, spaghetti, spinning around, apple picking, scaring little girls or any combination of the eight, you will enjoy Hinman Production Company’s production of Larry Shue’s ‘The Nerd,’” DeFeo said.
Tickets for “The Nerd” can be purchased at the door for $3 and seating is first come, first serve.