Students audition for Pippin
Jackson LaMar — Contributor
Southern’s theater department began this years’ journey on Aug. 27 and 28 with auditions for the upcoming musical, Pippin, a show that is not foreign to the director.
Larry Nye is the director and choreographer for year’s Pippin, and is in those positions for his second time at Southern’s theater department. This will also be Nye’s ninth time in his entire theatre career holding such a position. Nye is in his 15th year working at Southern and believes he has had a ton of success with nearly every production he has put together, which he is thrilled about.
“It’s amazing that you can make a living at this and have a successful career with my passion” Nye said. “I’ve done over 100 productions… I’ve been doing it since I was a child.”
Nye has a passion for the production shows, and while Nye he said he loves the original play, he is not afraid of changing production a little bit.
“The script is written different than the other shows,” Nye said. “A brand new revival script, so some things will be different that way.”
The revival script Nye references was written by Stephen Schwartz in 2013, and is said to differ greatly from the original dating back to the 1970’s.
During the auditions, students had to sing a portion of a song from any play musical of their choice and they were also expected to learn a dance routine from the show and then perform it for the choreographers.
“With this [these expectations] we are looking for people to be big and the ability to draw in a crowd’s attention,” Theater major Vittoria Cristante, a senior, who is an assistant choreographer for the production.
Cristante is also the associate production manager for the play. Her role is a crucial one, but she is not the only one that is important to the play’s success.
Communications major with a minor in theater Patrick Ballard, a sophomore, is the stage manager for the production, which will be his fourth production at Southern.
His position entails that he is not exactly in the show, but he must know everything about the show in order to help it run smoothly from behind the scenes.
“You have to know lines, know when props come in, know lighting,” Ballard says, “and really have to help the director in any way.”
After the audition process took place on Aug. 27 and 28, callbacks occurred on Thursday, Aug. 29. This process was to see which students made the final casting list on Friday, Aug. 30.
While some students showed clear signs of nerves, others felt excited for the opportunity to step on stage again.
“Just to be on stage is the joy,” said sophomore Keegan Smith, a psychology major.
Smith looks to be a part of his second play on campus following his last performance as ‘Pugsy’ in the musical comedy “The Addams Family” one year ago.
Opening night for Pippin will occur on Friday, Oct. 11, and continue through
with performances on Saturday, Oct. 12 at 8 p.m., Sunday, Oct. 13 at 3 p.m. and Thursday Oct. 17 through Saturday, Oct. 19 at 8 p.m. in the Lyman Center.