A quirky musical take on the life of Edgar Allan Poe will be staged next week as a collaboration between the music and theater departments.

The production of “Nevermore – The Imaginary Life and Mysterious Death of Edgar Allan Poe” will be staged at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 28, and 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 29, and Friday, Oct. 30, in the Bud Walton Theatre. While the live performances are open only to the campus community, a special live stream of the Friday show will be offered.

The production is directed by Erick Wolfe, chair of the Theatre Department; with musical direction by Dr. David Sharlow, interim chair of the Music Department.

“It’s a full-on musical,” says Wolfe. “The historical part of Poe’s life are a bit exaggerated, but the facts are there. There’s humor to it, but it is a dramatic work.”

Sharlow says the music featured in the show is offbeat, but very catchy.

“It’s sort of macabre meets tango meets honky-tonk,” he says. “It’s a lot of fun. I wasn’t sure at first, but it’s grown on me.”

The production will also utilize some innovative effects, including video projections and shadow puppetry.

“We’re trying to combine a lot of different things with this show,” Wolfe says.

“Nevermore” marks the first collaborative production offered as part of Missouri Southern’s new musical theatre degree program. It was made possible in part by a generous donation of $2,000 from Frank Fletcher Toyota. A special check presentation was offered last week at the Joplin dealership.

“This is actually the second project we’ve had an opportunity to support,” says Jim Adams, general manager. “The first was when a group of students went to New York to perform at Carnegie Hall. We owe it to our kids to be well-rounded. Any time we have an opportunity to reach out and support the arts, we like to do that.”

Tickets are free for students, faculty and staff, but will only be available on a first come, first-served basis. There will be no RSVPs.

The Oct. 30 live stream will be offered through Broadway on Demand. Tickets are $10, plus a $3.95 service fee. A 24-hour playback will also be offered.

To order tickets, visit https://www.broadwayondemand.com/not-live/ZBe6UX7w9tNH-nevermore-the-imaginary-life-and-mysterious-death-of-edgar-allan-poe–missouri-southern-state-university?channel=live-productions.

The cast features:

Logan Daniel, freshman, Baxter Springs, Kan.

Taylor Lewis, freshman, Carl Junction, Mo.

JJ Ramos, sophomore, Carthage, Mo.

Bailee Lewis, senior, Joplin

Evangeline Blackert, senior, Dearing, Kan.

Austin Prince, sophomore, Pevely, Mo.

Alexandria Gibson, junior, Miller, Mo.

Justin Turner – freshman, Webb City, Mo.

Abby Brower, sophomore, Joplin

Sophie Stoebel, freshman, Joplin