Independent women make for an independent play

Submitted Photo “Independence” follows a family of four women as they traverse through life, trying to find independence from each other and for themselves.

Focusing on a family of four women, the play “Independence” is a fun, PG-13 take on finding independence within the family and within themselves.

Directed by Angela Schnaible, the Minot State Uiniversity play will be performed starting Thursday at 7:30 p.m. and will be performed through Feb. 24 at the same time with a matinee on Feb. 25 at 2 p.m.

This play won’t be performed at the usual theaters that MSU performs in but will instead take place in the Black Box Theater in Hartnett Hall.

“I think the audience will really enjoy being in a smaller space for this type of show. It’s being held in our Black Box Theater … This place allows for the intense emotions of the show to be heightened, and I think the audience will really feel that,” said Schnaible.

The play is a small one, with only four actors. Katy Allers will be playing the mother of the play, Evelyn. Madison Thompson will be playing the eldest sister, Kess, Brenna Heupal will be playing the middle sister, Jo, and Annika Kraft will be playing the final member of the family, and the youngest of the sisters, Sherry. Each character has a story to tell and is in search of the namesake of the play, “Independence.”

“This play was chosen to be able to highlight strong female characters,” said Schnaible, “and to give actors an opportunity to analyze and portray characters with intense, raw emotions.”

One actress in the play, Brenna Heupal, has been acting since she was in elementary school. She has acted with the Mouse River Players, Central Campus Playmakers, Thespian Troupe 791, and MSU Summer Theatre. She has acted with the MSU Theater Department and Campus Players for the past three years that she has attended MSU for her degree in theater.

She will be playing Jo Briggs. Heaupal said, “At the beginning of the show, she reveals that she is pregnant and over the course of the show, she begins to cope with that idea and the idea of developing independence from her mother.”

Heaupal and her fellow actresses have been working hard on the play. The script was first read right before Christmas break at the college, but since classes started again in January, they have been hard at work with Schnaible to get the play ready.

“My favorite part of this production so far has been the team involved. All of us work together really well and we have a lot of fun. Our director is really amazing to work with. She is really supportive and encourages our creativity,” said Heaupal.

The play is not appropriate for all ages, Schnaible said. Saying that if they had to rate it, it would be PG-13 due to some language.