UNT theatre program to stage politically charged play “Hair”

Actors in UNT's production of "Hair" include, from left, Shahzad Shams as Hud, Hannah Thompson as Sheila and Mark Flores as Berger.
Wednesday, April 12, 2017 - 10:26

What: “Hair,” a play presented by the University of North TexasDepartment of Dance and Theatre, focuses on the hippie counterculture and anti-war sentiment of the late 1960s. The play was written by James Rado and Gerome Rani and will be directed by UNT faculty member Timothy Wilson, with music direction by Brian Piper.

When: 7:30 p.m. April 27, 28, 29 and 2 p.m. April 30

Where: University Theater, Radio Television Film and Performing Arts Building, 1179 Union Circle, Denton, Texas.

Cost: Tickets cost $10 for students, UNT faculty/staff and senior citizens and $15 for adults. Group rates are available. Audience members can purchase tickets at the box office, which is open from 1 to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday and one hour before each performance at the Radio Television Film and Performing Arts Building. For more information, call 940-565-2428, email dat-boxoffice@unt.edu or visit the Department of Dance and Theatre online.

More information: Visit UNT’s transportation services website to learn more about parking, including new rules. Patrons have three options for parking:
1.) ADA/handicapped patrons may park directly east of the Radio, Television, Film and Performing Arts Building (RTFP) in Lot 50 in the designated spaces.
2.) Patrons may pay to park through the app ParkMobile in the Union Circle Parking Garage (Lot 49). 
3.) Patrons may park for free in Lot 37, east of Wooten Hall, then take a short walk to the RTFP Building. Visit the fall 2017 campus parking map for more information.

What else: The play contains nudity and adult content.


DENTON (UNT), Texas - The University of North Texas theatre department will take audiences back in time to the sexual revolution and anti-war movement of the late 1960s with its production of “Hair.”

“Hair” will run at 7:30 p.m. April 27-29 (Thursday-Saturday) and at 2 p.m. April 30 (Sunday) at the Radio, Television, Film and Performing Arts Building (RTFP) Studio Theater.

The musical focuses on a “tribe” of young people who resist the war and live a bohemian lifestyle filled with sexual freedom and pacifist protest.

“The play's main themes address the political landscape of the United States during the 1960s, with regards to the Vietnam War and cultural prejudices regarding race and sexual orientation,” said Shahzad Shams, who plays Hud. “I think it has great relevance in our time and culture today.”

The play was controversial when it first premiered in 1967 because of its use of profanity, treatment of sexuality, depiction of the use of illegal drugs and the inclusion of a nude scene. Cast member Matthew Rodriguez, who plays Claude, said that this scene is not meant to shock audiences but rather demonstrate the freedom that young people felt during this time.

“We are doing it in a very tasteful way,” Rodriguez said. “The ‘nude’ scene is not about the nudity but rather the freedom the tribe encounters during one of the most important songs in the show.”

The show’s cast has worked to capture the sense of determination and pacifism that surrounded the political and social movements of the 1960s. Though they expect some audience members to walk out of the show, they hope that people won’t take offense but will instead appreciate the show’s message.

“We’ve been working really hard but we have a lot of energy and can’t wait to tell this story,” said Mark Flores, who plays Berger. “Everything about ‘Hair’ is going to be awesome!”

UNT News Service Phone Number: (940) 565-2108