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"The Beautiful People" Takes the Stage

The Beautiful People by American playwright William Saroyan comes to the stage October 18-26 at The Museum of Human Achievement. Directed by master of fine arts candidate Steven Wilson, The Beautiful People features University of Texas at Austin students and professional actors from the Austin community.

Written in 1941, The Beautiful People centers on Jonah Webster, an eccentric father navigating the parenting of his son Owen, who writes one-word novels, and his daughter, Agnes, who has a personal relationship with the mice that occupy the house. Jonah is trying to pass his optimistic philosophies of life onto his children, even as these philosophies are being tested by the fact that his third and oldest son, Harold, has gone missing.

Director Steven Wilson shares, “It is common practice for theatre artists to re-imagine well known classics, which I equate to a band covering a popular song. Sometimes you get a band that will do a cover song of an obscure tune. The band covers it and makes it theirs. I am interested in the same thing here. I want to unearth those lost gems, treat them as brand new work and offer them up for further inquiry.”

The Beautiful People cast includes Caleb Britton as “Owen Webster” (B.A. Theatre and Dance candidate), Janelle Buchanan as “Harmony Blueblossom” (Member, Actors’ Equity Association), Mackenzie Dunn as “Agnes Webster” (B.A. Theatre and Dance candidate), David Jarrott as “Jonah Webster,” David Toro as “William Prim,” Rommel Sulit as “Dan Hillboy,” Dotun Ayobade as “Father Hogan” (PhD student in Performance as Public Practice), Jacob Schnitzer as “Harold Webster,” and Drea Olivares as “Steven.”

Direction by Steven Wilson (M.F.A. candidate) - Assistant Direction by Amanda Koleckar (B.A. Theatre and Dance candidate) - Scenic Design by William Anderson (M.F.A. candidate) - Costume Design by Hope Bennett (M.F.A. candidate) - Lighting Design by Rachel Atkinson (M.F.A. 2013) - Sound Design by Simon Ghezzi - Production Management by James Ogden (M.F.A. candidate) - Stage Management by Colton Perry (B.A. Theatre and Dance candidate) - Assistant Stage Management by Drea Nicole and Joe Heike (B.A. Theatre and Dance candidate)

The Beautiful People runs October 18-19, 24-26 at 8:00 p.m. and October 20 at 2:00 p.m. at The Museum of Human Achievement in Austin, Texas. Admission is free; donations are welcome. Reservations are strongly encouraged. To reserve seats or request additional information, please email

Thursday, October 10, 2013