“Juvenilia” brings college sex to the forefront

Blowjobs, weed, beer, porn and a three-way – no, it’s not the latest crime report from UPD, but some of the subject matter of the Theater Department’s risqu? new show, “Juvenilia.”

Set in the dorm of a small liberal arts college, on a full 360-degree rotating stage, the department’s latest play follows a group of college friends who challenge each other to have a three-way with the Christian girl next door. However, as they try to go through with their scheme, they find much more than just some possible hook-ups.

“It’s about four college students searching for real love, who substitute sex for love. They are all searching for something deep, they are hungering for love,” director Elizabeth Kitsos-Kang said.

The title, “Juvenilia,” is defined as an artist’s early work. However, seeing that none of the characters are artists, Kitsos-Kang defines the significance of the title as the characters being early works still learning about the maturity of relationships in the real world.

“This show is about college,” said senior Cara Chute who plays one of the four characters, Meredith.

The characters, rich bratty-type (Meredith; Cara Chute), her hot boyfriend (Brodie; Kiernan McGowan), his awkward best friend (Henry; Jimmy Morgan) and the good Christian girl (Angie; Alisha Carpenter), partake in some activities University administrators would normally frown upon.

“I was a little surprised that I did not hear one thing from the administrators,” Kitsos-Kang said. “This play is racier than anything we have done in 10 years.”

The characters drink beer, smoke marijuana, make out with each other and Meredith even flashes the audience.

“One of the most challenging aspects of this for me has definitely been getting comfortable with the nudity. Meredith is an exhibitionist, and she isn’t afraid of anyone,” Chute said. “My biggest concern with it, especially as a college production, was that people would see me as Cara Chute up there in her underwear and not as the character. I hope they (the audience) will give me credit for being in my underwear.”

In addition to being the raciest play in the past decade for the department, it was also the very first time the students of the department chose the play.

“It was important to do a show about the college experience, and it’s fun to do a play where the actors can so easily relate to the characters and not have to play a realm outside of what they know,” Kitsos-Kang said.

Kiernan McGowan, who plays Brodie, said he hopes that the Theater Department has started a trend of students being more involved in what they do.

“I think it’s really wonderful that students got to pick the show, and I hope that the Theater Department can become an inspiration to other departments here at GW,” McGowan said.

Because of its relatable story and characters, the cast hopes that the average student will feel more compelled to attend “Juvenilia” and future plays.

“The average college kid doesn’t want to spend money to watch a classical play they might not understand,” Chute said. “This show is kind of in our language.”

Juvenilia runs through Sunday in the Dorothy Betts Theater. Evening shows start at 7:30 p.m, with the Sunday matinee beginning at 2 p.m. Tickets can be purchased online at theatredance.gwu.edu, by calling (202) 994-6178, or at the box office next to the Betts Theater. General admission is $9; students, seniors and the Sunday matinee are $7.

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