News • February 17, 2022

Neil Simon’s ‘Fools’ brings laughs to Wallace Theatre

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Riverside, Calif. (Feb. 17, 2022) – California Baptist University’s theatre program is bringing comedy and laughs to audiences with Neil Simon’s “Fools.”

The production was pushed back a week due to the delayed start of the spring semester caused by a spike in COVID-19 cases.

“I am incredibly proud of the work the students are doing on the production,” said Ethan Park, director of “Fools” and adjunct professor of theatre. “Their commitment to not only putting on a performance full of heart, joy and laughter but continually practicing safe COVID protocols to protect themselves and others has me leaving each night with a full heart.” 

Neil Simon’s “Fools” is a lighthearted comedic fable set in a small Ukrainian village of people who have all been cursed with unintelligence for 200 years. Leon Tolchinsky, an out-of-town schoolteacher arrives to educate Sophia, the daughter of Dr. Zubristsky. Leon soon discovers the curse and is tasked with breaking it before falling victim himself.

Nathan Sporcich, a marketing junior, plays Leon Tolchinsky. His favorite thing about the character is his frantic, hyperactive behavior, Sporcich said.

“(Leon) is high strung in a very humorous and entertaining way,” said Sporcich. “The audience can see his brain running at 110 percent at all times, laughing all the while as the village can never keep up with him.”

Elizabeth Wright, a theatre freshman who plays Sophia Zubritsky, said she enjoys playing a character with an optimistic look on life.

“Even when faced with arduous tasks, she still manages to find the bright side to it all,” Wright said.

With the play taking place in Kulyenchikov, Ukraine, the students had to master an accent. Shane Moser, a theatre junior, plays Dr. Zubristsky. He said the accent has been a challenging part of preparing for his role.

“The accent has not been the easiest thing to figure out,” Moser said. “But I hope everyone coming to see it will appreciate the work that not only I but the whole cast has put into our voices and characters.”

When: Feb. 18-19, Feb. 24-26 at 7:30 p.m.; Feb. 19, 26 at 2 p.m.
Where: Wallace Theatre, California Baptist University, 8432 Magnolia Ave., Riverside, CA, 92504
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Contact CBU Marketing and Communication

Vice President for Marketing and Communication:
Angela Meluski

8432 Magnolia Avenue
Riverside, CA 92504