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Wednesday, Jun 12, 2024
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"Ye Gods" performance written and directed by Mercer student

On Nov. 30, a very unique play performed by the Mercer Players opened at the Back Door Theatre.
“Ye Gods,” ran though Dec. 3. and Mercer student, Kyle Shook not only wrote, but also directed the play, which was a series of seven small vignettes, or mini plays. Opening night was a sell out show, and the cast and crew impressed the audience.
“I couldn’t have been more pleased,” said Shook, saying that the feeling of producing an original play was “really excellent.”
“Ye Gods” was a culmination of Shook’s three years at Mercer so far, and the idea for the script came from a combination of his interests and education, such as philosophy, religion and gender studies. It was a fun and creative process, Shook said, and he asked for advice all along the way.
“I couldn’t have done it without the cast,” he said, and everyone offered ideas on how to make the show the best it could be. Shook was very pleased about opening night, saying that everything in his control was accounted for. The only nerves present were those that always accompany performing. But the cast did great, and the audience was good, added Shook.
“Ye Gods” covered everything from Greek and Roman mythology, to nuns, Adam and Eve, and Zombies.
At auditions, Shook said that it was hard to choose a cast because there was just so much talent. Some people fit into roles very quickly, while others were harder to place. Overall, the cast was extremely well suited, and everyone did a great job, said Shook.
“Ye Gods” featured corpses, the lottery, gun shots, Cupid being attacked with mace and gods at mortal restaurants.
Some of the actors included Daniel Larson as Zeus, John Farrington and Alicia Landrum as Adam and Eve and Suzanne Stroup as Lucifer.
The play itself was started towards the beginning of Shook’s first semester as a sophomore and was finished spring of last year, during Shook’s junior year.
However, he began thinking of the idea his freshman year and the entire process took about two years from beginning to end.
“There were always difficulties,” said Shook, “I’m not a director, I’ve only ever directed one other play. But everything came together very well. I love to write plays,” said Shook.
According to Shook, the stage is a wonderful medium through with to convey public expression and social change, adding that he would love to write plays in the future.
If you missed all of the amazing talent in “Ye Gods,” be sure to attend “The Colored Museum” at the Back Door Theatre next semester, Feb. 16-26.
Also next semester, the Mercer Players will be performing “A Little Night Music,” by Stephen Sondheim and Hough Wheeler, at the Grand Opera House April 13-15.

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