Body Stories is a play unlike anything the USF students involved have ever experienced.
The play was produced together with USF and the Filter Theatre as part of the British International Theatre Program. Unlike most plays, Body Stories was cast before the script was ever written. Over the course of six weeks, Ollie Dimsdale, artistic director of the Filter Theatre, Stephen Brown, writer of Body Stories, and the cast sat down and crafted the story.
“This was the first time I’ve ever felt this close with the members of the production,” said Alexis Cruz, cast member. “We were allowed to be free with each other. We shared very intimate stories that became the script for the show.”
Christopher Hough, cast member, was worried in the early stages that the show wasn’t going to come together. Instead it became an experience that he will never forget.
“I took away so much,” Hough said. “There’s so much more you can do as an actor and a cast member than just perform your lines and perfect scenes. We did a lot of exercises that promoted friendliness and kindness between the production members, it sounds kind of lame but something as simple as giving a compliment a day really strengthens the group.”
Laydelis Piloto, cast member, said that the directors had the cast work through impulses, green-lighting what worked and nixing what didn’t.
“It was a f*cking awesome, life changing experience,” Piloto said. “Body Stories tells very personal stories very realistically, but the lighting and sound give it an unrealistic vibe. It’s incredible.”
Body Stories has shows tonight (Mar. 2) and Friday (Mar. 3) at 8 p.m., and at 3 p.m. on Mar. 4. Tickets can be purchased online or through the College of the Arts Box Office.