Theater Program to Present “Into the Woods” April 3-7
Theater Program to Present “Into the Woods” April 3-7

by John A. Lahtinen
Communications & Public Affairs Writer/Editor

Taylor Schwieger ’13, a biology major and theater minor, loves acting because it allows her to take on many different personalities.

“You don't have to be you,” Schwieger says. “You get to put on a mask. It makes me so happy to be on stage and be able to tell a story.”

Schwieger and her fellow actors in the UNH Theater Program have been hard at work for several months preparing to unveil their production of the Tony-award winning Into the Woods, by Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine. Heather Reba, a theater lecturer, is the show’s director. Erika Schroth is music director.

Into the Woods premieres on April 3.

The production opens Wednesday, April 3, at 8 p.m. in University Theater in Dodds Hall. Performances will also take place on Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. Matinee performances will take place on Saturday and Sunday at 2 p.m. A talkback with the actors will take place after the Saturday matinee. Tickets are $5 for UNH students; $10 for UNH staff and faculty, seniors and non-UNH students; and $15 for the general public. Purchase tickets online.

Into the Woods weaves together several well-known fairy tales and adds some unexpected twists and three-dimensional characters. The story follows a baker and his wife as they go into the woods on a quest to undo a curse. Along the way, they meet Little Red Riding Hood, Jack (of beanstalk fame), Cinderella, Rapunzel and many other popular characters.

Reba says the show is both funny and charming, while sometimes dark and tragic.

Into the Woods is a fairy-tale mash-up that brings a dose of harsh reality into a picture perfect world,” Reba said.

“Our production has been in the making for nine months when I began knitting costumes for the characters,” she continued. “I wanted the show to have a very woodsy, homespun look. The students and the design team have crafted nearly all the sets, costumes and props from scratch. We have been rehearsing for three months and are ready to show off our hard work.”

Another member of the cast, Paul Taylor, who has been performing since the sixth grade, says acting has become a central part of who he is.

“Being an actor provides an individual with the opportunity to transcend their personal identity and become another being altogether,” Taylor said. “Theatre has the power to bring out the full spectrum of emotions in a person, and seeing these emotions on members of the audience during and after the show is incredibly rewarding.”

Samantha Bowers, a music production major, feels acting teaches a person how to be comfortable within oneself.

“It helps you think on your feet, be social, relate to people in different ways, and be adaptable,” she says. “I know that I’ll take these skills with me no matter what I do in the future.”

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