Play offers artistic, abstract story line


Curtis Almeter

Mollie Sanders, freshman, theater major, receives a phone call on the cell phone of a dead man during a rehearsal of the theater production “Dead Man’s Cell Phone”, directed by theatre major Kayla Curran.

Tuesday, Jan. 31, was opening night for the Missouri Southern theater department’s production of Dead Man’s Cell Phone.

Under the direction of Kayla Curran, the six-person cast took the stage to tell the story of Jean, played by Mollie Sanders, and how her life takes a turn after discovering that fellow café-goer Gordon, played by Kyle Grover, is dead.

As the deceased Gordon’s phone continues to ring, Jean takes it upon herself to carry his cell phone and answer all incoming calls. She then meets his family and gets pulled into a web of lies through her attempts to bring comfort to them all while learning what kind of person Gordon really was.

The audience is introduced to an array of characters. Gordon’s mother, Mrs. Gottlieb, played by Hunter Dowell, brings over-the-top dramatics and much-needed comedic relief to the abstract and somewhat dark plot.

Gordon’s wife Hermia, played by Abigail Railsback, and his mistress, played by Ashley Trotnic, help to move the story along by revealing some key information but at times over sharing personal details.

Dwight, Gordon’s brother, played by Ryan Odenbrett, was an awkward character with good intentions. He and Jean become close and end up falling in love.

Gordon also is properly introduced in multiple scenes as he explains the morning of the day he died, his job as an organ trafficker and the afterlife.

The climax of a play occurs when Jean decides to continue Gordn’s work in the organ trafficking business and is faced with her own moratlity.

The story brings to light society’s obsession with technology and the constant need for connection, as well as thoughts on death.

Love also plays a vital but slightly less important role in the plot line. Gordon’s life seemed to be part of a constant struggle between who loved him more and who he loved the most.

Each cast member brought his or her character to life, making the performance both enjoyable and believable.

However, Dead Man’s Cell Phone may not be for everyone due to the style of the story. It has comedic value but still remains dark, very artistic and a bit abstract. Although strange at times, Dead Man’s Cell Phone is well executed by the cast and leaves the audience with something to think about.