​Six fictional characters, abandoned by their creator, interrupt a rehearsal in progress and demand to be brought to life by a new author. But the characters' existential agenda collides with the more lighthearted ambitions of these theatre artists, whose rehearsal becomes darkly entangled with the characters' tragic story, as York College Theatre Department presents
Six Characters in Search of an Author, February 21-24. John I. Baker III, associate professor of communication, directs this thought-provoking show that challenges audiences to consider the question “what is reality?”

​Baker says he chose to direct Six Characters in Search of an Author because he liked the challenges the script posed for his student actors. “The concept that we could wrestle with what would happen in the show if characters actually showed up and asked us to play their part is absolutely fascinating to me,” he said. “It’s a classic piece of literature that explains what reality is and is not.”

Originally written in 1921 by Italian playwright Luigi Pirandello, this classic piece of theatre of the absurd will challenge both the actors and audience members, says Baker.

The cast of the show includes Josh Anderson, Olivia Nabb, Deidre Freitas, Chris Martens, Victoria Miller, Boe Fraser, Olivia Nielsen, Ryan Harrison, Lexi Martens, Austin Hackel, Malia Davidson, Luke Dovel, Joshua Brown, Bryce Smith, and Nathan Lacina. Hannah Anderson assistant directs.

YC Senior and veteran of the stage Josh Anderson plays The Father, one of the six characters who are looking to bring life to their show. “My favorite thing about this play so far is how much it’s allowed me to grow,” said Anderson, who is used to playing good-guy roles. “This is an especially cruel kind of guy that I am portraying, because he sees himself as always in the right, and never in the wrong.” Anderson is digging deep to build this character. “The process has shown me a darker and nastier character than I realized I could be.”

The show isn’t all doom and gloom and existential conundrums though, says Baker. “There are a lot of funny things in the show… There’s also a lot of drama. But the question of the show remains: ‘What is reality?’”

Tickets for Six Characters in Search of an Author are $7 for students/seniors and $10 for adults. This production will be held in the Bartholomew Performing Arts Center (1098 E 10th St.), Thursday, February 21, Friday, February 22, and Saturday, February 23 starting at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, February 24 starting at 2 p.m. To reserve tickets, please visit www.york.edu/boxoffice or call (402) 363-5641. The box office opens two hours prior to show time and seating begins 30 minutes before show time. Reserved tickets must be paid for no later than 10 minutes before the show starts or they will be released for sale to other patrons. ​

By Chris Martens, Student writer