Excetera explores the Queen’s experience

Sister production to Existere presents Queen’s-relevant anecdotes with a comical twist

The Excetera cast on stage this weekend, performing a series of comic skits about the Queen’s upper-year student experience.
Credit: 
Shelby Cunliffe – Studio Q

Excetera IX opened on Friday night to a packed house at Grant Hall with an evening of hilarious and heartfelt sketches about the Queen’s student experience.

A sister production to Existere, a show that starts the year as part of Residence Orientation, Excetera is a comedy show written and performed by Queen’s students. While they share similarities in style and execution, Excetera is tailored to an upper-year audience.

Claire Connors and Shawn Dhasi, both ArtSci ’16, directed this year’s show. The cast, made up of eight actors, have varying theatrical experience.

Excetera IX opened with a rendition of Major Lazer and DJ Snake’s “Lean On”, and continued with various funny and exaggerated comedy skits. The highlights of the evening included a shopping channel program for condoms, and a scene where a group of friends consider basic university staples like coffee, tequila shots and partying and ask themselves, “Do I even like that?”

Although Excetera presents all aspects of campus life with humour — from sex to exams to dating — it also deals with important issues in an honest and light-hearted way.

A cast member of Excetera IX, Alex Martin, ArtSci ’15, said that’s one of their main goals.

“We don’t want to draw things out, especially the serious topics,” the fifth-year student said. “But if we can get to our point and hopefully reach a wide audience, then that’s what we’re going for.”

Mental illness was the focus of one such skit. The scene featured three students reflecting on living with anxiety, an eating disorder and depression. Going back and forth, each student thanked their mental illness for the various forms of pain it has caused, and finally for making them stronger.

Cast member Maura Condon, ArtSci ’17, helped write that scene. She said she’s grateful for the impact that the mental health skit has had on audience members so far.

“It’s so cool to have people come up and thank you for how much that really resonated with them,” she said.

While the show was informative with its many references to campus resources, it was mostly a night of laughter, silliness and choreographed dance numbers.

Overall, Excetera IX was a very enjoyable experience. The humour never outshone the real messages of the show, and the show successfully provoked laughter as well as moments of insight. 

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