Making an online friend before the end of the world
November 7, 2016
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Cast members were calm and confident in rehearsals Wednesday, just days from a world premiere in Ohlone's NUMMI Theater, which stands in stark contrast to the anxiety and panic taking place in the play.
One of the main themes of Spending the End of the World on OKCupid is urgency. The characters in the play, faced with the end of the world, decide to spend their last hours with the online dating site, OK Cupid.
Director Michael Navarra has been in the same position as the students he’s directing. Navarra, born in Spain, earned his Masters of Fine Arts in acting from the University of Washington. Since then, he’s acted in feature films and directed award-winning plays.
He earned a Meritorious Achievement Award for his direction of Jesus Christ Superstar at The Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival.
Navarra can share his experience with the students acting in Spending the End of the World on OkCupid.
“I love being able to give students the tools they need to go after their dreams and be successful,” he said.
Navarra was also looking for a way to create a production that would cater to the actors.
“I asked the playwright, Jeffrey Lo, to write a play for our students,” he said.
One goal of the play is to dispense values to viewers about the life’s purpose in a relatable manner.
The characters struggle to make decisions with only 12 hours left to live, adding a human element to the drama. In addition, the wide array of personalities who create profiles on OkCupid assimilates into today’s culture.
Teaching life lesson to his students and to the audience is the main goal of the play for Navarra.
“Life is short, so remember that and live life fully. From that perspective you’ll find out who you are and why you’re here,” he said.
The world premiere of Spending the End of the World on OkCupid is on Nov. 4 at 8 p.m. at the NUMMI Theater on the Fremont campus. Tickets are $10 and $12 and there will be six more showings until Nov 19.