TCC Stage Production Adopts Multi-Media Presentation

Theatrical comedy meets reality TV in the upcoming production of “Dearly Departed,” an innovative multi-media experience coming your way from the Tulsa Community College Theatre Department.

“This specific type of performance has not been done by TCC’s Theatre Department where we integrate a live feed from a camera used by one of the actors and project onto two screens,” said Lisa Stefanic, TCC adjunct professor and play director. “It will be as if someone is filming what is happening on stage for a reality TV show. The person behind the camera, while not an original character in the play, becomes a quiet member of the show’s cast.”

This dark Southern family comedy, written by David Bottrell and Jessie Jones, will be a multi-media experience using live-streamed video on screens to tell a story that has been likened to the “bucolic mayhem of ‘Greater Tuna.’” Stefanic added, “This is a new approach to a funny play.”

“Dearly Departed” is the rollicking, but barbed wire-sharp story of the dysfunctional Turpin family -- a typical contemporary clan who gathers after their father's passing to plan the funeral. Of course, the characters arrive with their own unique issues, personal agendas and self-serving perspectives. Dying is seldom convenient, but in the Turpin family, it can be hilarious.

The play pokes fun at families even as it celebrates their unbreakable ties, and holds a mirror up firmly for the audience to experience some universal truths – and to remember just how crazy their own family can be.

The cast for “Dearly Departed” includes Melissa Harris as Raynell; Josh Arbaugh as Royce; Nancy Chambers as Marguerite; Abigail McVickers as Lucille; David Moreland as Ray-Bud; Bailey Workman as Suzanne; David Watson as Junior; Jim North as Reverend Hooker and Bud; Anna Crowley as Delightful and Nadine; Celeste Arras as Veda and Juanita; and Justin Hendrix as Clyde and Norval.  Amber Trotter is the production stage manager.

The performances are 8 p.m., Feb. 14, 15, 20, 21, 22 and 2 p.m., Feb. 16 and 23 at the Tulsa Community College Southeast Campus VanTrease Performing Arts Center for Education (PACE) Studio Theatre.  For ticket information call 918-595-7777 or

PHOTO: Cast photo for TCC Theatre Department's production of "Dearly Departed."