Theatre department offers relaxing alternative



When attending a play, most theaters prefer ties and fancy dresses on their audience members. But UK’s Guignol Theatre invites theater-goers to dress down, throw on their most comfortable pajamas and enjoy the show this weekend.

“The Pajama Game,” the Department of Theatre’s most recent production, is about to make sides burst and eyes tear up for the second weekend in a row. The show, which is based on the 1950s Broadway production of the same name, is meant to provide amusement and provoke laughter.

“It’s a fun, bright, splashy musical,” said Nancy Jones, Department of Theatre chairwoman.

In this production, set in the 1950s, factory workers are going on strike in an effort to gain a seven-and-a-half-cent raise. The workers are pitted against the supervisors, and there’s also a growing love interest between a female worker and a male supervisor. Jones calls it a “corny story,” but said the audiences still love it.

“It has a nice, jazzy feel to it,” said Jim Trujillo, a theatre senior and the male lead. “You’ll walk away humming and singing the songs.”

Though the original performance took place more than 50 years ago, the play’s themes and jokes still ring true, Jones said.

With tuition hikes, tax increases and unemployment, audiences today can find it easy to relate to the characters and their cause in “The Pajama Game.”

“The show is still very contemporary … very pertinent to today’s economic situation,” Jones said.

This is the first time UK has produced this show, and Jones said the cast members have been doing a great job. The department wanted to do something fun while helping others at the same time.

Not only can show attendees enjoy lounging around in their pajamas during the show, but they can also provide sleepwear for children in need.

The Department of Theatre has teamed up with the local chapter of the Pajama Program, which distributes new pajamas and new books to children in foster care, shelters and similar living situations.

New pajamas and books for children ages 5 to 12 will be collected at each show for the program, and monetary donations will be accepted as well. The first 10 people to bring pajamas or books to the show will be admitted at no cost.

Jones said the Pajama Program’s goal is to collect pajamas and books for at least 500 children, and the donation will be well worth the entertainment the show promises.

“We have been entertaining a captured house, and I guarantee it will make you forget about text messaging for a while,” Jones said.

The Pajama Game will show Friday and Saturday at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday at 2 p.m. in the Guignol Theatre. Admission is $5 for students, $10 for faculty and staff, and $15 for the general public.