|Workshop of "Pinafore" Puts Student in Limelight During His First Semester
November 05, 2007
by Daniel Tart '11
photos by Austin Bell '10 and Ginny Evans '11
For many Davidson College students, Sloan Music Building provides a quiet study alternative to Chambers or the Union. But for me and the twenty or so Davidsonians rehearsing the upcoming opera workshop production of Gilbert and Sullivan's HMS Pinafore with directors Jacquelyn Culpepper and Carey Kugler, Sloan has become a raucous den of laughter, song and dance, spoofs, and carefully planned lampoons.
|Author Daniel Tart '11 sings in rehearsal as Mike Harkins '09 looks on.|
When people ask me about my activities in my first year at Davidson, and I tell them that I’m doing Pinafore, the result is often a blank stare. “It’s an operetta!” I explain.
If that doesn’t ring any bells, I try something like, “It’s kind of like a musical comedy, only more sing-songy and hysterical.”
The story line is simple and the final note is joyous, with elements of Monty Python-like satire throughout, especially in the choreography. A word to the wise—expect the unexpected! Whenever there should be a period, expect a semi-colon; wherever a comma, a parenthetical reference to A) another show, B) the foolish nature of the old British class system, or occasionally C) sex. After all, the entire play takes place aboard a naval ship “Sailing the Ocean Blue…” full of those who are “sober men and true!”
It concludes with a reprise chorus of my favorite song, “He Is An Englishman,” as we wave our Captain Jack flags in a solid show of British patriotism. As Scott Ripley, visiting assistant professor of theatre, noted, “Imagine that. Three married couples at the end of an operetta!”
|Harkins is hauled away by (l-r) Associate Professor of Chemistry Durwin Striplin and Andy Kifer '08.|
The cast of students and faculty has worked hard to put together the show in just a dozen regular rehearsals and a final production week.
As an adjusting college freshman, I am incredibly grateful to have been offered a major role by the director, and to be in a production that respects my time and academic obligations.
All of us in the cast are hoping for a huge crowd to see the show to enjoy a bit of high society (not really)! You won’t be disappointed!
|Abby Evans '08 during a light moment of rehearsal.|
(The Opera Workshop performances of HMS Pinafore will be Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 10-11 at 7:30 p.m. in Tyler-Tallman Hall of the Sloan Music Center. The performance is free and open to the public. No tickets are required. The production is accompanied at the piano by Michael Rowland. For more information visit http://www.davidson.edu/music or call 704-894-2848.
Davidson is a highly selective independent liberal arts college for 1,700 students. Since its establishment in 1837 by Presbyterians, the college has graduated 23 Rhodes Scholars and is consistently regarded as one of the top liberal arts colleges in the country.
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Posted By: Bill Giduz