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Clarke Performing “The Bully Show!” March 8-11

By Clarke News  |  February 26, 2018

Clarke University Drama and Musical Theatre Department is proud to present “The Bully Show!” This performance is a 60-minute, multi-faceted drama that explores the issue of bullying. The production will ask its young audience members to reconsider the assumptions they have about bullies and victims, realize the consequences of bullying, and encourage further discussions on the issue.

Show times in Terence Donaghoe Hall on the Clarke campus are at 7 p.m. on March 8-10, and 2 p.m. on March 11. Tickets are $7 for adults, $5 for senior citizens, and $3 for non-Clarke students and are available at the door.

In addition to performing at Clarke University for four days, the crew will take to the road beginning in March to perform locally at at least 10 Dubuque and surrounding area public and parochial elementary schools. The intent of touring with the show is to spread the idea of compassion, anti-bullying, and character building, as well as promote appreciation for the arts to younger audiences.

The current schedule for school performances is:

Carver Elementary, March 13, 9 a.m.
Sageville Elementary, March 15, 9 a.m.
Marshall Elementary, March 20, 10 a.m.
Lincoln Elementary, April 3, 9 a.m.
Audubon Elementary, April 5, 9 a.m.
St. Columbkille, April 10, 10 a.m.
Irving Elementary, April 12, 10:30 a.m.
Fulton Elementary, April 19, 8:45 a.m.
Prescott Elementary, May 1, 9:30 a.m.
Dyersville Elementary, May 10, 9 a.m.

Joe Klinebriel, Professor of Drama and the production’s director, said, “We chose to do this particular production because of the feedback we received during the conclusion of our last Theatre on Tour production. Teachers were very interested in having students explore theatrical material that would encourage empathy, character development, identifying bullying behavior, and discussing strategies to use in these types of situations. We are very excited to have found this play which effectively allows younger students to engage with this very important topic.”

The show concentrates on a somber and sensitive topic, but the Drama and Musical Theatre students counter the seriousness by interacting with the audience in an entertaining, gameshow-style way. The production’s unique design allows the cast – which consists of a gameshow host, his co-workers, and two contestants – to get the audience involved in speaking up on the topic of bullying. Throughout the course of the production, the gameshow host, Johnny, introduces various scenarios that challenge the “contestants” and the audience to identify bullying behaviors and provide useful strategies to use in these situations.

Alex Dean, a senior drama major playing Johnny, provided his insight on his role and the production. “From my perspective, playing Johnny provides a fun and amusing way to challenge audience members to speak up against bullying, whether it be the typical means of bullying as seen in the game questions, or in an unexpected way, as Johnny treats his co-workers. This play is a fun and informative discussion about bullying, and I was honored to be a part of the production.”

The production is made possible, in large part, by a grant from the Dubuque Rotary Club, a humanitarian and philanthropic group serving the local area and community. The Drama and Musical Theatre Department is grateful to the Dubuque Rotary Club for its support of the production and help with their assistance in spreading the word against bullying.