Theatre Conveys Serious Message

The Dark at the Top of the Stairs’ First Drama Preformed in Recent History

Matthew Bird, News & Online Editor

Art imitates life in the new fall play “The Dark at the Top of the Stairs.” It is a family drama about financial issues that takes place in Oklahoma City during the 1920s.

According to the PCHtheatre webpage, the play starts “[in] the home of the Flood family. Here we find Rubin, a traveling salesman for a harness firm; Cora, his sensitive and lovely wife; Sonny, their little boy; and Reenie, their teenage daughter. The plot consists of a series of short stories — the fight between a husband and wife, the fear of an overly shy young girl going to a dance, the problems of an introverted little boy who feels that the whole world is against him, the corroding marriage of Cora’s rowdy sister, and the tragedy of a military school cadet who suffers from the stigma of being a Jew in an alien community. There is dark at the top of everyone’s stairs, but it can be dissipated by understanding, tolerance, and compassion.”

Senior Harry Tiggard, who plays main character Rubin, says the message alone is reason enough to see this production.

“Everyone has something going on in their lives that they don’t want anybody to know about. The Flood family is one such facade, and I think the audience will really be able to relate to a lot of the issues discussed and connect with the characters as a result,” Tiggard said. “This show has a very serious message that I think people need to see. This show gives a view at the cracks in our society as a whole and the conflicts that everybody faces”

Rachel Land, Company stage manager, says the message is important for everyone to hear.

“I think this show is meant to help people see the world a little bit differently. It’s a bit of a lesson on empathy, and what happens when we don’t consider other people,” said Land. 

While portraying the character of Rubin, Tiggard has gained new sympathy for others dealing with similar situations.

“Bringing this character to life has meant understanding the psychology of a man who has been forced to live a very strict life with a wife and children when he longs to be free once again as he was in his youth,” Tiggard said.

The production is directed by Nicole Voss with student leaders Production Stage Manager Sara Ellen, Company Stage Manager Rachel Land, Production Assistant Gabby Wendt, and Technical Director Emma Li. 

Tickets for the November 3-6 shows are on sale now at or the QR code to the side