October 21, 2009
By Rebecca Howard
Judd Farner is a senior studying theatre at CSU and the artistic director and co-founder of the Young Producers Organization. Now, he is inviting students and community members to spend "A Night with Judd" on Oct. 23 in the University Theatre at the University Center for the Arts.
As a performer and a self-proclaimed “movie-phile,” Judd Farner has always been drawn to storytelling.
“I realized what I loved was storytelling and the effect it can have on a person, an audience, a culture,” Farner said.
It’s no wonder that his passion eventually led him to pursue a degree from the theatre program at CSU, where the senior also currently serves as Artistic Director for the Young Producers Organization.
YPO is a student group that creates a platform for theatre students to bring their own productions to life. Farner is one of the founding members of the student organization, which came into existence in 2007.
The organization puts on two Zing! Theatre program performances a semester, in which students apply to be granted a $50-$100 budget to put on a small production.
They also hold a workshop series that brings in members from the theatre community to teach highly-specialized workshops, such as their recent “Gore Make-up” workshop.
But most importantly, YPO exists to fund the production of shows by students involved in theatre at CSU. So naturally, Farner will be putting on his own production for YPO on Oct. 23.
This Friday night, Farner and his cast and crew are set to perform in an acting recital titled “A Night with Judd.” According to Farner, he wanted to put on this production for two reasons.
“One, I needed to put an acting reel together for graduate school," Farner said. "The second was that as the Artistic Director of YPO, I thought it would be a good motivator for the incoming students to see me doing a little song and dance to help support the things they want to do.”
The recital includes five separate scenes that will be performed by Farner along with three other actors. There will also be pre-filmed “informational” videos about YPO in between each scene, which Farner said are based off of improvisational work that he and the other actors did.
According to Farner, the entire performance incorporates “a little of this and a little of that,” including a “big finale” that involves performers from the CSU Dance Department. Farner said that a lot of the show has a comedic feel to it.
“The style of the show also lends itself to having a lot of fun,” Farner said.
And although the production is called “A Night with Judd,” there are many other students involved. The cast and crew include a lighting designer, a three person stage-management team and 10 dancers, in addition to his three acting partners.
“I think that we have assembled a really good team of people to work on this show, people who are good at what they do because they are capable of having fun while they do it, and that just seeps into audience,” Farner said.
Tickets can be purchased at the campus box office, or online at csutix.com.
All proceeds will benefit the Young Producers Organization as its members pursue theatrical exploration.