Ashley Hail, a junior from Cincinnati who plays Dr. Livingston in the play Agnes of God, listens while Aubrey Wilson, a senior English major from Walton, performs. Wilson plays the mother superior at the convent. (Amanda Wheeler)

By Meg Lunsford

Sex, murder, lies and a convent collide in EKU Theatre’s final production of the year. Agnes of God by John Pielmeier combines these issues in its controversial plot about Agnes and the death of her child.

The play, which opens this week on campus, centers on the story of a nun’s birth of a child, one she claims is a virgin birth.

But soon the newborn is found dead in a wastebasket.

A psychiatrist is called in to determine whether Agnes is competent to stand trial for the murder.

The psychiatrist searches for the truth about the newborn’s conception, birth and death, and ultimately discovers more than she intended.

“The play questions why we believe what we believe,” said Dr. James Moreton, EKU Theatre’s program coordinator. “It explores faith versus reason.”

For instance, the plot pits forensic and scientific evidence on the child’s death with the religious beliefs held by Agnes and other convent members.

“It is intended for mature audiences only,” Moreton said.

The play, he said, portrays actors smoking illegal substances and features adult themes, including sex and murder, which might not be suitable for a younger audience.

The show is scheduled to run from Wednesday, April 16, through Saturday, April 19. It begins at 8 p.m. each night in the Gifford Theatre in the Campbell Building. Tickets cost $5 for students and senior citizens, and $6 for adults.

Seating is limited and those looking to attend are encouraged to make reservations, Moreton said.

“Seating will be on the stage, so a reservation will only reserve a seat, not the location of the seat,” Moreton added. “No one will be seated late because of the stage seating.”

Reservations can be made by contacting the EKU Theatre Box Office in the lobby of the Campbell Building at 622-1323.

Tickets can be picked up at 7:45 p.m. before the play.