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White Rose: play follows brave student in WWII era

Jason Houtz, playing a Nazi, and Meredith Hamilton, playing a brave student, rehearse for White Rose. Photo: Tatiana Bento

Do you enjoy historical plays peppered with humor? Then come see White Rose, a play about a courageous woman during the time of WWII, which runs April 23 through May 1 at 7:30 p.m. with an extra 2 p.m. performance on Saturday in Performance Hall.

Director John Cox, a senior theatre arts major, said this play is set in Germany under Hitler’s rule and is based on a true story. The main character, a college student named Sophie, along with her brother, anonymously distributes pamphlets titled “White Rose” that speak against Hitler. Both Sophie, played by Meredith Hamilton, a senior theatre arts major, and her brother are discovered and arrested. Their arresting officer and interrogator, played by Matthew Ryan, a staff member who works at the BJU Press, must decide whether to execute them in obedience to his superior officer, a devoted Nazi played by Jason Houtz, a junior Bible major, or to set them free.

Cox said the play is relatable to college students, since the main character is a college student. “It’s a play about life,” Cox said.

Hamilton said she thinks the play’s emphasis on the slow, subtle progression into evil will cause students to re-evaluate their beliefs about evil.

“[Students] can expect to think about the consequences of good men doing nothing,” Cox said.

However, this play doesn’t come without its share of humor. Hamilton said it promises a lot of laughs and will be a great study break for students.

Cox and Hamilton are both involved in White Rose to fulfill the requirements for their senior project as theatre arts majors. Hamilton said she is hoping to grow as a performer through this play and has enjoyed being able to work closely with a director who pulls out aspects of the character she hadn’t thought of before.

“I’m excited to see the culmination of all the people involved,” Cox said, “and seeing places I can improve.”

Tickets can be purchased online through BJU Programs and Productions.