Stetson University will stage a student-directed production of the Obie Award-winning play Circle Mirror Transformation by playwright Annie Baker. Directed by Stetson Theatre Arts major Dakota Stitsinger, the production takes place at 8 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 17, Friday, Jan. 18, and Monday, Jan. 21, and at 6 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 20, at Stetson’s Second Stage Theatre, located inside the Museum of Art – DeLand. There will be no performance Saturday, Jan. 19.

Admission is free; donations will be gladly accepted.

Set in Shirley, a made-up town in Vermont, this play centers on a six-week community acting workshop, where four students and a teacher — all with various levels of acting experience — take a dive into the world of theater.

Through performing various acting exercises, the characters learn what it really means to be an actor and how there is more to acting than people may originally think. They also learn more about the people around them — their histories, struggles and talents. Relationships of all kinds will form and break as all the participants learn to expose themselves in the way only actors can.

Stitsinger is directing the play for her senior project and wants the audience to experience the theatrical process in action.

Circle Mirror Transformation is a play about the theater process,” said Stitsinger. “Generally, people look at theater and see the final picture, but this show is everything that happens before the final point. This play also speaks to the fact that everyone involved with theater knows — the people you work with become your family. They see you laugh, cry, and sometimes, they are the reason you laugh or cry. I hope parents of theater students will get a glimpse into what actually happens during all of those hours spent at rehearsals and start to understand why we keep returning to the stage. And who knows? Maybe other students will take an interest in theater, knowing that our best memories come from the moments before the curtain opens.”

The cast includes Rae Nobles as Marty, Elijah McCoy as James, Drake Cunningham as Schultz, Reed Wilson as Teresa and Rachel Harrison as Lauren.

Call 386-822-8700 for tickets and information.