Filichia Features

Some of the Thespian Festival workshops on the University of Nebraska-Lincoln campus are held in modest classrooms. Not this one. The mammoth all-purpose room in the Westbrook Music Building will be needed today, for no less than Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman will be holding an audition coaching workshop. Some high-schoolers are itching to perform [...]

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At the Thespian Festival in Lincoln, Nebraska, communal lunches may be common, but the conversations among participants is choice. I was sitting near a middle-aged man who’s one of the dozens of high school drama directors here. Said he, “I’ve been directing shows for so many, many years now – decades, really – so it’s [...]

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Here’s an easy prediction to make. Theater teachers and high school drama club members who weren’t in Lincoln, Nebraska last week didn’t have nearly as good a time as those who trekked to the Midwest metropolis. The Thespian Festival marked its second decade anniversary in Nebraska’s second-largest city. Coincidentally enough, Lincoln’s official nickname is Star [...]

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Looking for a space to do your next musical and can’t find any? Don’t overlook the possibility of renting the local church. I know, I know. Pews instead of theater seats means no arm rests –aside from one on each aisle and one in the middle. Sometime a church’s acoustics can make lines and lyrics [...]

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Whodunnit? One thing’s for certain: in the musical MURDER BALLAD, the butler didn’t. He couldn’t have, for none of the characters in this 2012 musical works in that capacity. Michael is a poet. Tom is an actor/bartender — with the accent on the last three syllables. Because Sara and The Narrator are both women, they [...]

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Two middle-aged character men, one middle-aged character woman, one set, one piano, everyday contemporary clothes (well, okay, one mink coat), and you’re in business. In fact, you don’t even need the set to do WHAT ABOUT LUV? The entire three-character musical takes place on a bridge, so you can easily make do with a backdrop [...]

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Here’s the way to advertise it: “From the composer-lyricist of WICKED, PIPPIN and GODSPELL.” That’s ad copy that’ll sell tickets – and you wouldn’t be lying. Oh, your audience may think you’re fibbing once it begins to hear Stephen Schwartz’s score for THE BAKER’S WIFE. It’s clearly his most ambitious and it doesn’t remotely resemble [...]

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In his program bio, Will Shunk stated that he is “a fifth grade student” who was “born with CP” — cerebral palsy – “which affects his ability to control his body.” Shunk then added, “He hasn’t let it get him down. He’s had a wonderful time being part of DISNEY’S PETER PAN, JR.” That happened [...]

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Jason Brantman and Fiona Santos certainly had a dilemma. Now did they have a solution? The two were looking to co-direct a musical for their Broadway Training Center of Westchester (New York). They were both intrigued by the musical version of Frances Hodgson Burnett’s A LITTLE PRINCESS. They found Brian Crawley’s book and lyrics as [...]

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So how does 9 TO 5 play with a teenage cast? We found out when Amas Musical Theatre, in conjunction with The Rosetta LeNoire Musical Theatre Academy, produced the 2009 Broadway musical version of the 1980 film hit. Amas and the Academy offer opportunities for kids from 14 to 20. Although it’s a “come-one, come-all” [...]

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