Belhaven Theatre Production ImageAugust 4, 2015 (Jackson, Miss.) - The Belhaven University Theatre Department is taking college theatrical arts to another level in Jackson with the release of their upcoming productions for the 2015-16 fall season. This year's list is full of popular and celebrated plays that include: Shrek the Musical, Doubt, Little Shop of Horrors, 'night, Mother, Doctor Faustus and Ghost Stories of Mississippi.

The department wants to make Belhaven the top location for live theatrical entertainment. The plays were specifically chosen for their broader appeal as well as their artistic credibility. Dr. Elissa Satrwell, Chair of Theatre Department, said, “Shrek and Little Shop of Horrors were chosen because they are fun and offer an opportunity for our musical theatre students to experience the kind of popular musical entertainment that audiences flock to see. Shrek also has a great script and score written by Pulitzer and Tony-award winning playwrights and composers. It's full of spectacle, color, and laughs.”

The two musicals will preview the directing skill of Belhaven's new associate professor of musical theatre, Dr. David Sollish. He has worked with the best and brightest from Broadway and Hollywood and has been a part of over 300 productions. “Watch out for some great puppetry work, tight harmonies, and a story that will make you laugh, cry and shriek,' said Dr. Sollish. “The performance is a combination of comedy, thriller, film noir, and very campy musical theatre, which-all put together-equals big fun!”

Dr. Sartwell said she is looking forward to Doubt, because it speaks to each person differently and in profound ways. “We were drawn to Doubt because of its nuance and because it provides fantastic acting challenges for the small cast and is one of the most thought-provoking plays of the twenty-first century.”

Each year the theatre department tries to include a classic, and this year Doctor Faustus was selected. “Don't expect it to be the 'traditional' play, because director Joe Frost is already reimagining the story of the man who sells his soul to the devil.” Ghost Stories of Mississippi is another original play selected for this year's list. The play is inspired, in part, by the outdoor surroundings of campus, where the play will be performed in late October.

The last play on the roster is 'night, Mother. Dr. Sartwell adds, “We decided to include 'night, Mother in this season because it seemed like a good opportunity to highlight mental health awareness and broader efforts within the church community to reach out to those who, like the central character of the play, don't see a reason to live.” She is eager to coordinate with other departments on campus to provide mental health resources in conjunction with 'night, Mother.