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The UMass Theatre Guild Presents "The Secret in the Wings"

Dark fairy tales, an ogre and a little girl left alone by her parents are all a recipe for the UMass Theatre Guild’s spring alternate-space production of the play “The Secret in the Wings.” The show will premiere April 4-6, in the University of Massachusetts Amherst Fine Arts Center Arts Bridge room 434. The cast of 10 (eight of which are pictured above) explores the sinister side of lesser known children’s fairy tales, primarily those of the Brothers Grimm.

Play director Shannon Nelson-Maney, a UMass anthropology and theatre major, explained the plot as, “A young girl, Heidi [Amanda Burke] is being left with a babysitter who is called Mr. Fitzpatrick [Bobby Morse] and she believes that he is an ogre.”

“[Mr. Fitzpatrick] constantly asks [Heidi] to marry him, which is in reference to ‘Beauty and the Beast,’” said Nelson-Maney adding, “[Heidi’s] father gives her a rose that he stole from Mr. Fitzpatrick who is the beast in this situation and because of that Heidi is now trapped with Mr. Fitzpatrick who is constantly asking to marry her and she constantly says no and he decides to tell stories which are all based on Brothers Grimm stories.”

“As the stories go on they get darker and darker and they kind of stop right at their darkest point and then we go to the first half of the next story,” she added.

When asked how rehearsals have gone so far Maney replied, “They’ve been very good, people have been very involved, they seem to have a fun time, I know I have a fun time! We’ve been going through very quickly and we’ve been getting things done very well, very fast and everything is looking amazing.”

Nelson-Maney did warn that there are some suggestive themes in the play which may be inappropriate for a younger audience, but no inappropriate language.

“I think [an audience] should come in with an open mind and to know that it’s not what it seems,” Nelson-Maney concluded, “Things aren’t always what they seem in the show and that the issues that are dealt with are kind of weird, but not something that doesn’t happen in life.”

Tickets can be bought at the door to the Arts Bridge room 434, or reserved in advance closer to show dates as there is limited seating due to the intimate size of the space.

For more details concerning the production see our website.

About the UMass Theatre Guild:
The UMass Theatre Guild is a volunteer organization committed to facilitating student-run, theatre-oriented experiences for UMass students and community. Its origins go back to 1906, when the College Orchestra, Glee Club, and Mandolin Club united to stage small theatrical productions as the Musical Association. Over the years, the organization has staged everything from operettas and Shakespeare to student-written plays and contemporary theatre, including last year’s productions of Arcadia and Lucky Stiff. Follow us on Facebook, and on Instagram at @umtheatreguild for updates and glimpses behind the scenes! Follow us on Twitter at @UMTG.

The student Executive Board, directors, and members of the cast are more than happy to fulfill any requests for interviews. Please contact Nicole Zadykowicz for interview inquiries, photos, and further information.