Alpha Psi Omega is the national theatre society that students can participate in at Mississippi College. Their purpose is, in short, to allow students to benefit from and contribute to the society, while participating in theatre-related activities at the university. The club offers a chance for new members to be inducted in the fall and spring semesters. Induction is not determined by classification or major, but some credits in theatre productions and classes are required to qualify.
Being a member of APO National Theatre Honor Society is not required for participation in dramatic productions. The society is made up of students with diverse majors, who enjoy being a part of dramatic productions. The university puts on two major productions in the fall and spring semesters, and participation in these productions counts towards some of the member’s standing in the society.
Assistant professor of theatre Dr. Phyllis Seawright is the sponsor of the Pi Chi chapter of Alpha Psi Omega at MC. Officers of the academic year 2021-2022 include president/director Beth Owen and vice presidents/stage managers Kat Goss and Takaye Farmer. Alpha Psi Omega was first founded in Fairmont University of West Virginia in 1925. The national officers include Grand Director Dr. Richard Jones, Grand Stage Manager Phoebe Hall, and Grand Business Manager Dr. Bret Jones.
Owen is a senior nursing major from Gambrills, Maryland. She decided to join APO after being cast as Iris in The Tempest her sophomore year. She views theatre as an inclusive activity and looks forward to welcoming new members to the society. “I love that APO allows me to have diversity in my daily activities. I get to do something that I enjoy, and it opens up an avenue to a whole theater community that, as a nursing major, I wouldn’t get to experience otherwise,” she said. “I love that in theatre you can be whoever or whatever you want to be.”
Goss is a music education major and theatre minor from Vicksburg, Mississippi. After transferring from Hinds Community College, she joined APO as a fifth-year senior because she wanted to be involved in theatre, without putting more productions into her packed schedule. “I love the chance for a community that has a love of theatre in common, especially because we all come from different places in our theatre experience,” she said. “Some people have mostly done straight plays, and love Shakespeare and the classics. Others love musical theatre and all the modern world applications that are represented.” She is most excited for students to have an opportunity to grow in their love of acting and working backstage. “I want others to see it as a place to be exposed to new ideas and art forms,” she said.
Farmer is a junior chemistry major from Memphis, Tennessee. She joined the society in the spring of 2020, after being cast alongside Owen in The Tempest. “I overheard some active members talking about it, and I asked if I could join,” she said. “The thing I love the most about being in APO is that I get to be involved with a group of people who love theatre as much as I do. My favorite thing about theatre is seeing actors completely transform into the characters they are performing.” She is excited to serve the society by sharing the vice president position with Goss. “As vice presidents, we help assist the president while also overseeing the audition process for new members. APO has a very diverse active body. We all have different majors, hobbies, interests, but we share a love for theatre.,” she said. “APO is like a family to me. Each of our members, and sponsor, are caring, loving and genuine.”