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USD Theatre to present an evening of one act plays

VERMILLION, S.D. -- The University of South Dakota’s Department of Theatre will present a workshop production of two student-directed one-act plays, Friday, Oct. 31 and Saturday, Nov. 1 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Nov. 2 at 2 p.m. in the Arena Theatre of the Warren M. Lee Center for the Fine Arts.

The evening of one-acts begins with “Variations on the Death of Trotsky”by David Ives and directed by second year directing graduate student Taylor Clemens of Elkader, Iowa. On August 20, 1940 an undercover agent, Ramon Mercader (Lukas Ptacek), attacked Russian Revolutionary Leon Trotsky (Trevor Hudson) in his Mexican home with a mountaineer’s ice axe. The murderous blow to Trotsky’s head failed to kill him instantly. Trotsky was later taken to the hospital where he was operated on, surviving for a day. It is this day that Ives presents to the audience and the various ways in which Trotsky has died. These variations range from soap opera drama to farce.

The evening concludes with Elaine May’s power play, “The Way of All Fish,” directed by Ryan Fortney of Kansas City, Mo., a first year graduate student in directing. This comedic play centers on the battle for supreme power between two women: Ms. Asquith (Emily Vortherms), an upper level executive at Asquith Enterprises and her secretary, Miss Riverton (Leah Geis). Over sushi and wine the two discover that perhaps they are not as strong or as powerful as they originally thought. Envy, murderous plots, raw fish and three story walk ups all combine to make the rapid paced and comedic whirlwind.

General admission tickets ($10 General Admission and $5 USD students with ID students) can be purchased by calling the University Theatre Box Office at (605) 677-5400 or online at


Founded in 1862 and the first university in the Dakotas, the University of South Dakota is the only public liberal arts university in the state, with 202 undergraduate and 78 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, Knudson School of Law, Sanford School of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, Beacom School of Business and College of Fine Arts. With an enrollment of nearly 10,000 students and more than 400 faculty, USD has a 16:1 student/faculty ratio, and it ranks among the best in academics and affordability. USD’s 18 athletic programs compete at the NCAA Division I level.

This material is available in an alternate format upon request. Please contact University Relations at 605-677-5759. If you are a person with a disability and need a special accommodation to fully participate in any university activity or event, please contact Disability Services at 605-677-6389 as soon as possible, but no later than 48 hours before the event, so that appropriate arrangements may be made.


Hanna DeLange
USD News