A new play is set to open that questions the importance of discovery.
Oxygen, written by chemists Carl Djerassi and Ronald Hoffman, transitions between the 1700s and present time, focusing on which of three chemists actually discovered oxygen.
“It’s for stage and sciences majors alike,” said Sarah Hinrichsen, acting senior. “It’s something different then what you see at OCU.”
David Pasto, professor of theater and director of the show, said he chose this play after teaching it in one of his classes because of the literature mixed with the science of chemistry.
“If you’re interested in science it’s great to see,” Pasto said. “If you’re not, it explains the science, so there’s no need to be afraid you won’t understand.”
Pasto received visuals from Hoffman to use during the performance.
“It’s literally theories of science on stage,” said Ian McGee, acting senior. “If that doesn’t sound intriguing, then I don’t know what does.”
In the different centuries, the three male chemists are played by the same actors, including McGee, resulting in them switching time periods often during the performance.
“There’s a link that links the characters together,” McGee said.
Originally, the women were double cast as well, but Pasto said he decided to cast more females so they wouldn’t be playing double roles.
The play will be performed as a reading at 8 p.m. Oct. 22, 23 and 25 in Room 151 in Walker Center for Arts and Sciences.