USITT to bring Halloween spirit with Spook Alley

Southern Utah University’s chapter of the United States Institute of Theatre Technology will be holding their annual Spook Alley Halloween haunted house on Monday, Oct. 31, and Tuesday, Nov. 1, from 8 p.m. to 12 a.m. 

Spook Alley is a collaboration between forty-one designers, technicians and actors to create a haunted house in the allegedly haunted tunnels underneath the Auditorium. It starts in the Auditorium lobby, where a tour guide will lead groups through the tunnels.

“Under the Auditorium, there’s a series of tunnels that connects the Auditorium Theater to the old Adams Theatre, which is the outdoor amphitheater,” said USITT event coordinator Abby Gough.

For this year’s Spook Alley, USITT opened designer applications in order to give more theatre department students the chance to work on something this semester.

“Organizing it, for me, entails working with over 20 designers for one alley,” said Gough. “I have five different hair and makeup designers and five different costume designers.”

Spook Alley designers submitted sketches and design thumbnails for their sections before executing their ideas to put together the haunt. Scare actors did a workshop to work on their frightening skills and develop their characters, though some characters were more cut and dry than others.

“In a haunted house, it’s different from theatre. You have what this character will be doing, but you don’t necessarily have a defined character. So, it gives them a lot more freedom to decide the background—if there’s a background or if it’s just a ghoul,” said Gough. “A lot of them went a lot more in depth than I would have.”

Spook Alley is a fundraising event for the club to attend the yearly USITT conference, which will be held in St. Louis, Missouri, in March. Each ticket sold will go directly towards sending students to the conference.

People attending Spook Alley should be prepared to be scared. However, they have the option to let those running the event know that they need a less scary version of the haunt. Attendees under eighteen will need parent permission on a waiver to go through Spook Alley. Tickets cost $5.

Article by: Tessa Cheshire
Photos courtesy of Susannah Pilkington