Valentine’s Day may have come and gone but love was still in the air at Pacific Union College thanks to the latest Dramatic Arts Society production, “Love: is a Four-letter Word.” Audiences filled the Alice Holst Theater for six nights to watch actors explore how and why we fall in seven one-act plays.
The production, which ran from February 16-24, featured seven one-act plays, ranging in length from three to 45 minutes. Tears and laughter filled the theater as characters felt the awkwardness of first wedding nights, the heartbreak of unrequited love and much more. Cambria Wheeler, who produced the one-act festival, says, “ I hope [the audience] leave thinking about the different facets of love. Our human forms of it are so different, and they can cause healing, but grief also. Love is so different. There isn’t only one love, but many ways in which it manifests itself.”
Wheeler’s own appreciation for PUC manifested itself through this festival, which was a definite labor of love. Seven plays to costume, light, prep and set, thirteen actors working with four directors, and only six weeks to rehearse. But it all paid off. As one audience member said, “I was impressed by the quality and creativity of the production, as well as the thought provoking nature of the pieces.” But more than the congratulations, the compliments and the lengthy applause, what truly validated the effect the one-act pieces had on the audience were the tears, the laughter and the reflective look in their eyes as the lights dimmed, the stage went black and they were left to ponder the multi-facets of love and what it meant to them.
The Dramatic Arts Society (DAS) of Pacific Union College produces several performances each year and works in conjunction with PUC’s Napa Valley Musical Theater, which performs a musical production every two years. DAS performs at locations throughout the Napa Valley, including the Lincoln Theater in Yountville and on-campus venues such as the new Alice Holst Theater.