Featured Students

CHFA Featured Students: The Cast of Glass Menagerie

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L to R: Noah Van den Bosch, Karson Krass, and Katherine Summerfield

The Glass Menagerie opens Thursday, February 18th at 7:30 at the Robert E. Johnson Theater – please see more details at the end of the post. This week’s featured students are three of its cast members.

Katherine Summerfield plays Amanda Wingfield. She is a Senior Theater Major from Louisville.

Noah Van den Bosch plays Tom Wingfield. He is a Senior Theater Major from Jackson, Tennessee.

Karson Crass plays Laura Wingfield. She is a Senior Theater Major from Murray.

Quirky Fact:

  • Katherine:  I have a hole in my left ear drum and I sell insurance.
  • Noah: My watch is 1 hour and 15 minutes off. I never change it. I changed it once, when I put it on the first time, but never since.
  • Karson: I’m allergic to Neosporin and I have a cat named “The Admiral”

Dream Role: 

  • Katherine: “Lady M in the Big M Show That Cannot Be Named” (see here for more about this superstition)
  • Noah: Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet
  • Karson: Cleopatra
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Marion Cotillard  as “Lady M”

Favorite Actor:

  • Katherine: Helen Mirren
  • Noah: Robin Williams
  • Karson: Vivien Leigh
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Vivien Leigh in Tennessee Williams’ A Streetcar Named Desire

Right Now I’m Listening to:

Favorite Line That You Get to Say in  The Glass Menagerie:

  • Katherine: “Why have you chosen this exact moment to lose your mind?”
  • Noah: “Blow your candles out, Laura.”
  • Karson: “Hello, Blue Roses!”
Tennessee Williams
Tennessee Williams, the author of The Glass Menagerie. Williams was born in Columbus, Missouri.

What made you decide to get into theater/acting/theater major?

  • Katherine: Because it felt like home. I finally found a community who accepted me for the way I look and the way I am. I was never too bossy or too loud or too spirited, and people said you’re talented, you’re amazing, and we’ll take you as you are.
  • Noah: It’s very accessible. It’s easy to get into. They train you from the bottom up. They take someone who has had no experience and give them experiences and opportunities.
  • Karson: I did competitive acting, forensics and speech in high school for seven years. I took a break and it was awful! When I got to the theater department at Murray State, it felt like home and it helped with my own personal anxieties and fears because I was able to follow my passion again.

Who have you enjoyed working with?

  • Katherine: Yes[In other words] Everybody has had something to offer or teach me. I’ve learned so much from literally everyone. Justin Walsh is our technical director and he got me into sound design. He told me I could be a good tech person and a good actor. He’s also tall and gangly and a sweet man and he has two precious little babies.
  • Noah: Salar Ardebile (an alumni of the theater department). Easily the most passionate actor I’ve ever met. He embodies the idea of living in the moment – his imagination, his ability to play and pretend is exceptional. It’s easy for anybody to feed off of that. He makes me a better actor because he’s such a good actor!
  • Karson: Landen Bates (co-star in The Glass Menagerie). I’ve worked with him in Acting II and Acting III (classes). He was my scene partner in The Tempest. We have a crazy chemistry on stage and we work really well together. Out of all the partners I’ve had, he makes me want to be a better actor. If I fail myself, then I’m failing him and the scene will fall apart.
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Karson Crass and Landen  Bates during rehearsals

Why should we come see the Glass Menagerie?

  • Katherine: Most people have heard of the play or have seen it and think it’s a really heavy tragedy, but we’re taking it from the viewpoint of comedy. The show is about love: it’s about a family who is getting along and tries to love one other. The tragedy is that it falls apart. We’re finding the love and humor between these three people. It’s not going to be like any other production they’ve ever seen.
  • Karson: If you don’t come see it, you’re missing out on something great. The character of Laura has been such a personal journey – she’s the character that I didn’t know I needed and so I feel like that’s really gone into my performance. I feel a great connection with the cast members when I’m performing but really if you don’t come see it, you’re going to miss out on something phenomenal.
  • Noah: You only get one chance. You’ll never get an opportunity to see it again!

About these students, Professor Lissa Graham-Schneider writes “It’s been a joy working with this group of actors. All of them have been extremely dedicated to the show and to their craft. I am proud to be their teacher and their director.”

Murray State University, Department of Theatre presents the first production of 2016 with the Tennessee Williams masterwork, THE GLASS MENAGERIE, directed by Lissa L. Graham-Schneider. The show features Noah Van Den Bosch as Tom, Katherine Summerfield as Amanda, Karson Krass as Laura and Landen Bates as Jim. THE GLASS MENAGERIE will open Thursday, February 18 and will run at 7:30pm through Saturday February 20. There will also be a Sunday matinée on February 21 at 2:30pm. All performances will be held in the Robert E. Johnson Theatre on the Murray State Campus. Ticket prices range from $12-$15 with all Murray State Students allowed in free with a current MSU student ID card. For more information: call 270 809 4421 or find us at www.murraystatetickets.com. This semi-autobiographical account of Tennessee Williams’ early days in 1930’ s St. Louis is a heartbreaking yet often funny “memory play” told from the perspective of Tom Wingfield. THE GLASS MENAGERIE is the story of a family desperate to break free of the burdens of their past and their present. Tom’s mother, Amanda has been abandoned by her husband, and now lives only for her children; his unmarried sister, Laura, is a fragile and painfully shy creature who retreats into a world of glass animals; and Tom himself is torn between his poetic inclinations and the responsibility of supporting his mother and sister. Each escapes into their own personal “glass menagerie” as a means of eluding the pain of their own – and each other’s – existence.

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