The Williams Baptist University theatre department will close the 2023-24 season with Alice in Wonderland, a play adapted by William Glennon, based on Lewis Carroll’s classic story.

The production will take place in the Maddox Fine Arts building located on the campus of Williams Baptist University. Productions will take place, April 19-20, with curtain time at 7:30each night and a Saturday matinee at 2 p.m.  Admission is $3 for students and senior citizens and $5 general admission.

“It is a creative retelling of the story,” said play director Melinda Williams. “It starts out with a group of actors who want to put on the show, Alice in Wonderland, but they don’t have an Alice. But, during the first few minutes of the play, they discover Alice and take her through the adventures of Wonderland.”

The story and the characters will probably be familiar to the audience, but maybe not the staging.  

“We are trying something new with this one.  While Startup Chapel is being renovated, we had to find other venues for our plays.  This one is going to take place in the Maddox Fine Arts Building lobby,” Williams said.

The play is designed as an immersive experience, with the adventures in Wonderland surrounding the audience.  

“The audience will literally be in the middle of the action,” Williams said.

Appearing in the production will be Chloe Ring of Paragould as Alice.  

“Chloe is a freshman and appeared as one of the abductors in the fall production of The Romancers, with very few lines and this semester, she has the lead,” Williams said. “That’s the beauty of educational theatre.”

Also appearing in the production are Rachel Jones of Cabot, Alyssa Burnett of Bald Knob, Eric Burns of Los Alamos, NM, Kade Carter of Bono, Emmy Ervin and Anna Veteto, both of Paragould, Brittany Dowdy of Greenwood, Ronald Hill of Blytheville, Savvy Garringer of Beebe, Courtney Bettis of Lonoke, Macy Miller of Jonesboro, Sarah Futrell of Cherry Valley, Christopher Thomas of West Memphis, and Grace Rogers of Newport.

“This version has characters you will recognize, but also some you will miss, like the caterpillar and Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum,” Williams said.

WBU is a private, Christian university in Walnut Ridge, Ark.