College of Fine Arts and Design

UCO To Present Interactive Comedic Performance 'Happy Anniversary Angel! Love Gino'

Feb. 10, 2012

The University of Central Oklahoma's Theatre Arts Department will present "Happy Anniversary Angel! Love Gino," an interactive comedic theatre performance, at 7:30 p.m., Feb. 16 - 18 at St. Mary's Episcopal Church located in Edmond.    

The production, written by Jay D. Spencer, Cheryl D. Smith and Stefanie R. Coletti, is designed to include audience participation and follows the style and theme of the highly acclaimed off-Broadway show "Tony and Tina's Wedding," which ran 22 consecutive years after opening in 1985.

The audience will participate in a vow renewal service celebrating the fifth wedding anniversary of Gino and Angel, the lead characters in the show.  Audience members can also enjoy food catered by Old Chicago restaurant and to participate in dancing following the show.

Hayley Thompson, Central faculty member and director of the production, describes the play as challenging and an opportunity for Central students to learn a different sort of theatrical performance.

"This play challenges our students' improvisational abilities in a way that they've never been challenged before and they are doing a phenomenal job. The actors have completely embraced their characters and will make sure the audience has a great night," Thompson said.

"Happy Anniversary Angel! Love Gino" has been a unique transformative learning experience for Central students involved in the production.

"This play has challenged me to approach my character differently.  Since the play only has one hour of written script, I, as the actor, will improvise with the audience for the other two hours, making it essential that I know my character's life story and how he handles himself in every situation, not just the ones written for me," said Lars Ostrem, student actor in the show.  

Additionally, Kaitlin Burton, the student who plays "Angel" said being in an improvisation-based show has brought the entire cast together.

"It has really helped me grow as an actress and has made the entire cast come together and work as a team. It's definitely a once-in-a-lifetime experience and I'm so glad I got to go through it with such a great group of people," said Burton.

Tickets to the show are $26 for adults, $22 for senior citizens, $22 for Central faculty and staff members and $16 for students.  To purchase tickets, call (405) 216-2585.

For a complete listing of UCO College of Fine Arts and Design events and performances, visit