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University News

‘Dead Man’s Cell Phone’ to ring on ETSU Theatre/Dance stage

JOHNSON CITY – Sarah Ruhl’s award-winning play “Dead Man’s Cell Phone” will be presented by the Department of Theatre and Dance at East Tennessee State University Wednesday – Saturday, Feb. 21-24, in Campus Center Building Studio 205.

Performances will begin at 7:30 p.m.

The show opens in a café where Jean is sitting quietly but has become increasingly frustrated at the endless ringing of a cell phone at a nearby table.  Unfortunately, Gordon, who is the owner of the cell phone, isn’t answering.  He’s dead.  Jean answers the phone, and what follows is a series of unexpected and somewhat comical events involving Gordon’s family as well as a mysterious woman.


The cast, which is comprised entirely of ETSU students, includes Angel Thacker as Jean; Alex Hennage as Gordon; Matthew Edwards as Dwight; Caroline Denning as Mrs. Gottlieb; Callie Dowd as Hermia; Vianna Isbister as the Stranger; and ensemble members William Forney, Caleb Harrison and Claire Johnson.

Other students participating as part of the artistic and production team are Erin Teaster as stage manager; Andrea Marshall as costume designer; Ryan Leonard as sound designer and audio technician; Rebecca Milhorn as associate lighting designer; and Madelyn Goward and Belle Lewis as wardrobe assistants.

ETSU faculty member Melissa Shafer is the director and lighting designer for “Dead Man’s Cell Phone” and is joined by colleagues Cara Harker as choreographer; Bobby Funk as fight choreographer; Delbert Hall as scenic designer; Beth Skinner as costume shop supervisor; and Zach Olsen as technical director.

Tickets are $5 for students, faculty and staff with ID and $10 for general public and can be purchased at


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