Harding University theatre performed “A Storytelling Event: Struggle Bus” Feb. 4-6 in the Administration Auditorium, but a new method of viewing will be available this weekend, Feb. 12-14, via Pay-per-view (PPV) Broadway On Demand, which allows audience members to purchase tickets to view a private event like this play. For this production, tickets will be sold online for $14.
Based on a book written by Josh Woods, the show tells the story of a family and their efforts to sell a beaten-up passenger van. Their ad, filled with brutally honest and hilarious descriptions, quickly becomes an internet sensation. The cast members wrote the entire play themselves from each chapter and created the props. Characters in the show change from one actor to another in different scenes, and audience members follow the adventures and problems the van faces. The play ensures the storytelling element is portrayed as if the audience were reading the book.
Sophomore Davis Buckley, who is also an actor in “Struggle Bus,” is in support of the theatre department streaming their performances.
“In this digital age, online shows become more and more requested and important to casual fans,” Buckley said. “Even without COVID-19 regulations, it would allow the community to grow and not be stuck in old ways.”
This year, two other productions were in the works to be streamed, as well as performed live.
“We had planned to shoot two productions, ‘Vintage Hitchcock’ and ‘Dear Edwina,’” Dr. Charles Bane, associate professor of film, said. “‘Vintage Hitchcock’ was shot as a live multi-cam production.”
Due to COVID-19 regulations, theatre programs have adapted. In the near future, streaming is on track to become standard among productions.
“I like streaming, but I don’t want it to be like this forever,” chairperson of the theatre department Dr. Steven Frye said.
“The Struggle Bus” is not the only show to stream online this year. “Much Ado About Nothing” will be available on PPV Broadway On Demand Feb. 26-28, and Spring Sing on April 15-17.