Appreciative audiences greeted Concordia Seminary Theatre’s presentations of “A Company of Wayward Saints” on Jan. 21-22, 2000 in Wyneken Auditorium on the Seminary campus. With few exceptions, the cast and crew of the production are all members of the Concordia Seminary community. Seminarian John Otte, a member of the cast, also served as director.
In commenting on George Herman’s “A Company of Wayward Saints,” Seminarian Otte observed, “At first glance, the play seems like nothing but a slapstick comedy, and rightfully so. It is, after all, based on a style of theatre popular in the mid-17th century…known for its improvised mayhem, slapstick physical humor and bawdy humor…To dismiss “Saints” as only a comedy, though, is to judge it too quickly.”
Concordia Seminary Theatre began in the winter of 1997-98 with the goal of producing two plays each year. Oversight for the program is provided by Dr. Dean Nadasdy, Associate Professor of Practical Theology at Concordia Seminary who also occupies the Gregg H. Benidt Memorial Chair in Homiletics and Literature. It is primarily through this endowed faculty chair that Concordia Seminary Theatre had its origin and is able to meet its goal of providing two dramas per year.
Literature chosen for Concordia Seminary Theatre productions always carries theological content and imagery. One of the two productions each year is selected to appeal to children. Past productions include Archibald MacLeish’s Pulitzer Prize winning verse setting of Job, “J.B.” (Spring, 1998); Joseph Robinette’s adaptation of C.S. Lewis’ “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe” (Fall, 1999); and John Forsythe’s adaptation of C.S. Lewis’ “Screwtape Letters,” “Screwtape” (Spring, 1999).
Additional information concerning Concordia Seminary Theatre may be obtained from Dr. Dean Nadasdy, Concordia Seminary, 801 DeMun Ave., St. Louis, MO 63105; (314) 505-7145.