Imagery of Regent people and campus

Production Explores Man's Relationship with Technology

By Amanda Morad | January 17, 2013

The Adding Machine opens Friday, Jan. 18, in the Studio Theatre.
Photo courtesy of the School of Communication & the Arts

Since the invention of the wheel, man has had a love-hate affair with progress. No period of time highlighted this tension better than the Industrial Revolution. The Adding Machine, opening Friday, Jan. 18, on the Regent University stage, is a fascinating look into the life, death and afterlife of Mr. Zero, a cog in the wheel of modern business, who finds himself replaced by an adding machine.

"We chose The Adding Machine because we thought it was a timely and pertinent idea, this concept of technology encroaching upon humanity," said Scott Hayes, chair of Regent's theatre department and the play's director.

The Adding Machine will run Jan. 18-20 and Jan. 24-27 in the Studio Theatre, located in Regent's Performing Arts Center. Afternoon and evening show times are available.

Purchase tickets through the Box Office.

With humor and pathos, this American classic offers a fresh perspective on corporate greed, advancing technology and cosmic injustice. "I wanted to direct this piece because I was struck by the expressionism," Hayes explained. "In this genre, you get to dramatize what's inside people's minds, not necessarily what's happening. It's about perception rather than reality."

The Adding Machine is essentially a morality play, in which a central character endures many circumstances and emerges having learned something. Reflecting on Mr. Zero's series of hardships, Hayes explained that, "even though this is not a Christian play, the opportunity to dramatize a story like this is good for a person of faith in order to make people think about the impact of their choices."

A critical aspect for morality plays is the opportunity at the end for the central character to make a new choice with the information he's learned through the obstacles he or she has faced. The Adding Machine didn't quite play out this opportunity in the original production, so Hayes made his own choice for the Regent production. "We've added a moment at the end where the main character gets a chance to think," he said. "Making that adjustment is important to maintaining the structure of the morality play."

MFA in Acting student Andrew Lease will play his thesis role as Mr. Zero.

Purchase tickets.

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