Fanning the fire on the FHSU campus

The Fort Hays State University’s Encore Series and the Aquila Theater Company will present Ray Bradbury’s “Fahrenheit 451” at 7:30 p.m. next Tuesday, at the Beach/Schmidt Performing Arts Center on the FHSU campus.

“Fahrenheit 451” is Bradbury’s account of a dystopian future in which the law requires all books to be burned. As a result, society becomes repressive in all forms of new knowledge, creative thinking and communication.

The main character, Guy Montag, is a book-burning fireman by profession. In this world, firemen start fires instead of putting them out. Instead of conversations and innovation, people spend the majority of their time watching television on wall-sized sets and listening to the radio, directly fed into their ears.

After 10 years of routinely burning books, Montag suddenly realizes the greatness and power of books. He says, “There must be something in books, something we can’t imagine, to make a woman stay in a burning house; there must be something there. You don’t stay there for nothing.”

Bradbury’s story directly addresses the issues of censorship and the effects of technology on society.

“It’s the 60th Anniversary of publication for Fahrenheit 451, and there’s a lot of buzz flying around the offices,” Vince Bowhay, said assistant director of the student union and special event coordinator said. “I think it’s amazing that a book’s themes are still relevant 60 years later, considering all the news about NSA and the government oversight that’s happened recently. Fort Hays is bringing this show to campus to help people see the book’s [Fahrenheit 451] plot, especially if they didn’t have the opportunity to read it for themselves.”

Ticket prices: reserved seating for the public is $30; seniors and children ages 5-17 are $28; and FHSU students are $21. For unreserved seating, tickets are $26 for the public, $24 for seniors and children ages 5-17 and $17 for FHSU students.

Tickets can be ordered online by phone at 785-628-5306, by visiting, or at the Student Service Center in the Memorial Union.

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