Stitching it all together
Liberty’s first all-female musical shares stories of life through quilt blocks
Through 16 quilt patterns, the all-female cast of “Quilters” shared the stories and struggles of pioneer women.
“Quilters,” a workshop musical, is comprised of seven cast members who collectively play over 50 separate characters.
The characters tell the stories of pioneer life through song, dance and monologue.
The story follows a pioneer woman and her six daughters throughout their lives, telling stories of love, illness, happiness, strife and more.
Each story is represented by a quilt block, and the cast assumes different roles in each block to tell a different story.
Freshman Elsie Winokurzew found the story and the performance unique.
“It’s the most interesting play I’ve ever been to,” Winokurzew said.
“It’s so alive. You feel like you’re in the moment.”
Similarly, freshman Jordan Wilson appreciated the play for how distinctive it was.
“It’s so intriguing, I can’t imagine not being here,” freshman Jordan Wilson said.
“It’s really abstract. … Each character draws you in and … brings you in their world.”
“Quilters” is the first all-female musical performance at Liberty University.
“Quilters” director Linda Cooper said the cast and production team was mainly comprised of freshmen and sophomore students in the theater department who were “cutting their teeth” in the department by working on the production.
Students from the School of Music provided the musical’s score by playing as a folk band onstage, helping set the tone of the musical and also offering props to cast members throughout the performance.
It was through these props that the cast of seven women was able to transform into 50 different characters, including men
Kathy Jordan has been costuming various Lynchburg theater productions for 17 years, and has worked with Liberty’s theater department for just over two years.
While “Quilters” presented some costuming difficulties due to the multiple onstage costume changes, she said the experience was a blessing.
“For me, the part I always enjoy the most is collaborating with others to tell the story presented on stage,” Jordan said.
“The actors did an excellent job transitioning in their portrayal of many different characters while never leaving stage.”
According to Jordan, the costumes were designed with pockets to allow cast members easy access to props and items of clothing to assist with the cast changing characters.
Some of the costumes were even recycled from a production that Jordan worked on at Thomas Road Baptist Church 17 years ago.
Each quilt block that helped tell the story of “Quilters” was made specifically for this performance, as well as the full-sized Legacy Quilt that is displayed at the end of the production.
Freshman Rebecca Ticker attended the show and thought that the musical’s use of quilts in storytelling made a statement about how strong women have been present throughout history.
“I felt like the story emphasized the strength of femininity that we sometimes reject today, especially the idea of making quilts,” Ticker said.
The show ran from Oct. 13 – Oct. 16.
Moyer is the feature editor.