UW Tacoma picks Pulitzer Prize winner for campus performance

“Water by the Spoonful,” the 2012 Pulitzer Prize winner, by Quiara Alegría Hudes’ will take center stage at UW Tacoma in May.

The play is the second installment of Hudes’ trilogy. The trilogy is based loosely on Hudes’ cousin, uncle, aunt and grandfather, who served in Iraq, Vietnam and World War II. “Water by the Spoonful” showcases the story of a Puerto Rican Iraq War veteran, Elliot Ortiz, as he discovers life after war. It highlights how Elliot deals with familial relationships and how those around him handle addiction and tragedy.

“It’s just so right for our campus, partly because of its connection to the military experience, and partly because of its specific emphasis on showcasing the experiences of diverse populations,” said UW Tacoma professor Michael Kula.

UW Tacoma junior Lucas Gomez has acted in the previous two productions at the university. “The characters feel real, and the story has a lot of levity and it touches on lots of different hardships,” said Gomez.

The Student Theatre Acting Guild approved the production at the end of last year. After the approval, Kula and Marilyn Bennett, an adjunct faculty member and founding Artistic Director of Toy Boast Theater, applied for funding.

As opposed to previous years, students received credit for production participation with a loose curriculum. Students registered for TIAS 490 will receive five credits for the class. Eight students are currently registered for this course.

“[In the future] I hope to see a lot more resources for the theatre program so we can have bigger spaces for a larger audience…and more resources for actors” said Gomez.

Bennett currently heads the play. She also directed UW Tacoma’s 2014 play of “Anonymous” as well as the first installment of Hudes’ trilogy, “Elliot, A Soldier’s Fugue”.

Kula, who is also faculty advisor of the Student Theatre Acting Guild, assisted in hiring Marilyn Bennett as the director and choosing “Water by the Spoonful” as the production.

“Marilyn has directed with us before and has been a great asset for a lot of reasons. She’s not only an amazing director, but specifically she is a director who is a perfect match for us and our students,” said Kula. “She sees the newness of our program and the newness of theater/acting for most of our students as an opportunity.”

Opening night is May 5 and the following performances are May 6, 11,12 and 13. Each show will begin at 7:30pm in the Broadcast Studio Theatre in Cherry Parks. Tickets will be $10 for general admission and are free to UW Tacoma students with ID. Tickets will be available on online at brownpapertickets.com on April 24. Cash and check will also be accepted at the door.

Due to adult themes and language, this is recommended for teen and adult audiences.

PHOTO BY LEDGER

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