The department of theatre and dance is putting on the "Damn Yankees". The opening show is Sept. 22 at 7:30 p.m. Ball State University, Photo Courtesy
'Damn Yankees' to open at University Theatre
A musical about baseball, missed opportunities and the devil will premiere Friday in the University Theatre.
Told from the perspective of the main character Joe Boyd, "Damn Yankees" gives a glimpse into the life of a man who is so passionate about the Washington Senators beating the New York Yankees that he sells his soul to the devil to get a chance to help them.
The devil changes Boyd, a middle-aged man, into a young baseball star named Joe Hardy, but Boyd eventually realizes that he misses his old life.
Gabe Ford-Dunker, a senior musical theatre major, said Boyd's experiences are what make him a great character to portray.
"I love this role because technically Joe is a middle-aged man in the body of a 22-year-old," Ford-Dunker said. "That brings a lot of maturity to the character, and I enjoy discovering what that is. It's fun to think about all the things that Joe has encountered in his long life and how much depth that can bring to a younger character."
Bill Jenkins, director and chairperson of the Department of Theatre and Dance, suggested performing this musical because of its timeless plot and the popular songs, such as "Heart," "Shoeless Joe" and "Whatever Lola Wants."
"Any viewer can appreciate this musical because everyone has had something they want in life where they have contemplated just how far they are willing to go to get it," Jenkins said. "This musical tests not only Boyd's values, but the audience's values as well."
"Damn Yankees" marks both the 50th production Jenkins has directed and the last musical Ford-Dunker will act in at Ball State.
"It has been bittersweet to know this is my last show here but also lovely to see all the talent in the underclassmen that is so ready to be front and center on stage," Ford-Dunker said. "Everyone is working so hard and giving it their all. I feel blessed to be surrounded by so many genuine, hard-working people."