The Abbey Players updates: Cabaret, Puffs, and Student One-Acts


Courtesy/Arthur Coy

Actor Ryan McDonough as Banquo in the Abbey Players’ production of “Macbeth”

Tom Canuel, Culture Editor

Following a year of uncertainty from the pandemic, the Abbey Players are back for the fall semester with a line-up of shows for students, faculty, staff, alumni, and families to enjoy. According to Daniel Bird Tobin, the new director of the Abbey Players, the group has three major events planned for this semester.

On October 1st, the Abbey Players will be hosting a Cabaret night. Tobin described Cabaret as “an evening about singing songs people enjoy. It gives members the ability to get comfortable on-stage in front of an audience while having fun singing a favorite song they might be unable otherwise to sing.” Tickets for Cabaret are available now on the Dana Center website. To attend, it costs $10 for adults and students receive a discount for $8 tickets. 

In addition to Cabaret, the Abbey Players will be performing Puffs, a play based on a series about a certain boy with a lightning scar, on October 29th, 30th, and 31st. The play takes place at a wizarding school, but acts as an ensemble piece. In other words, the play focuses on the lives of all the students attending the wizarding school, not just the main character.

According to Tobin, “we have cast the shows, and we began rehearsals the week of September 13. 

Ryan McDonough, class of 2022, is playing Wayne, “the character whose world the play floats around.”

More information about tickets and show times will be released closer to the date of the show. Tickets will be available through the Dana Center website.

Finally, the Abbey Players are planning for several student directed one-act shows to be performed on November 19-20. 

Tobin said, “We’ve selected 3 shows for the series of performances. We have a version of A Wrinkle in Time, a farce from the 1920s, and a student-written play.” 

Auditions for the student-directed plays will occur on October 4 for students who are interested. More information on auditions will be posted on the Abbey Players call board, and emails will be sent out around the time of auditions.

Ryan McDonough, the Director of Membership for the Abbey Players and one of the leads in Puffs, wants to encourage first-year students and any students interested in acting to take a shot at auditioning for a play with the Abbey Players. “It is always worth giving it a shot. We have so many opportunities, and you can commit at any level.”

Upon reflecting over his past three years with the Abbey players, McDonough is excited to see the future productions with Tobin as the director. 

“It’s been a great time, with so many leadership opportunities. Especially with this new era with Daniel, it has allowed for so much creativity. The ability to express ourselves creatively has definitely been a big highlight of being a part of the Abbey Players for me,” McDonough said.

According to Tobin, it feels good to have one less barrier with how Saint Anselm has handled the pandemic. After reflecting on his experience last year with reading plays from music stands and directing an outdoor Macbeth in the spring, Tobin commented, “For a show like Puffs, things have changed because our plays are now fully produced. We are bringing back the performance style we used to have with lights, costumes, music, and action on-stage, the style pre-pandemic. I am very excited.”

Tobin and McDonough want to encourage students to attend Cabaret and Puffs coming up in the month of October. If students have any questions about auditioning, students can reach out to Tobin or McDonough for more information.