Fox helps bring ‘The Wild Party’ to the stage


BEREA — Kiris Marie Fox, of Sidney, was part of the cast and crew from Baldwin Wallace University that, under the direction of Victoria Bussert, produced Andrew Lippa’s “The Wild Party,” a show filled with wildly eccentric characters set in the roaring 1920s with an extraordinary jazz score. Fox, a graduate of Anna High School majoring in arts management and entrepreneurship, served on the Arts Management & Entrepreneurship Production Team in the co-production between the BW Conservatory of Music’s music theatre program and the department of theatre and dance.

“The Wild Party” tells the story of lovers Queenie, a vaudeville dancer, and Burrs, an abusive vaudeville clown, who decide to throw the party-to-end-all-parties in their Manhattan apartment. After the arrival of a slew of guests living life on the edge, Queenie’s wandering eyes land on a striking man named Black. Burrs’ jealousy erupts and sends him into a violent rage. Gun in hand and inhibitions abandoned, Burrs turns on Queenie and Black. The gun gets fired, but who’s been shot?

Bussert, who directed the production at BW in 2009, said, “I wanted to challenge our students with a new form of staging. Scenic Designer Jeff Herrmann came up with a brilliant ‘alley staging’ design where the actual stage cuts down the middle of the theatre with audience seating on either side. The result created a new dynamic between the actors and audience – everyone was essentially a guest of this wild party; this is a huge challenge for student actors, but the time felt right to take it on again.”

“The Wild Party” is one of an extensive number of performance experiences providing real-world opportunities for students at Baldwin Wallace University. Productions include plays, musicals, operas, music concerts and dance concerts. Details at bw.edu/events.