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"The Diver's Wife," written by senior theatre major, explores process of grieving

Mathieu Myrick Annie AmentaThe Diver’s Wife, written by senior theatre major Lauren Belmore is the next play this season to be performed by the Department of Dance and Theatre. Belmore said that in writing the script, she chose a subject that has affected many people, including herself.

The play, which will run 7:30 p.m. March 11-13 and 2 p.m. March 14, focuses on Rosalind (Annie Armenta, right), whose husband Vincent (Mathieu Myrick, left has just died in a pearl diving accident. Her family — mother Kathy (Tori Windham) and siblings, Brendon (Caddo Lindsay) and Gemma (Amanda Cannaday) — have different reactions as Rosalind tries to process her grief.

Belmore went through a similar situation when her father died suddenly when she was 16.

“It will be a comfort for audiences to see the characters process their grief on the stage and I think it will open the discussion of mental health issues in a positive way,” Belmore said. “It is important to understand why Rosalind acts the way she does and see how she processes her grief so she can continue to go on with her life.”

Belmore didn’t write about her own loss until college.

“When you’re a writer sometimes there’s an issue that you don’t have the right words for the emotions at hand, at the time,” she said.

Belmore got further inspiration for the play from a song with the same title written by harpist Joanna Newsom. Belmore worked on the play for two years and received mentoring from theatre professor Andrew B. Harris in a special problems class.       

A previous work she had written, She’s Beyond Good and Evil, had been produced by the Applause Theatre in Houston and UNT’s FirstStage series in 2012. The Diver’s Wife is the first student-written play presented by the department for its Lab Series in 40 years.

The play is directed by George Boyd, whose credits include directing Lily Tomlin in Broadway's Appearing Nitely, as well as off-Broadway and Texas Shakespeare Festival productions.

The play’s music is composed by Andrew Campbell, a graduate from UNT’s College of Music, and is played on a harp, which the main character plays.

After she graduates in May, Belmore plans to move to her hometown of Houston and work in its theatre community.

“The goal is to become a playwright and ultimately a Pulitzer Prize winner,” she said.

—Jessica DeLeón, University Relations, Communications and Marketing

(courtesy photo)

Posted on: Mon 02 March 2015

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