Freshmen theatre majors showcase skills and characters


Isabella Trevino performs as a bachlorette in “The Dating Game” skit in the blackbox theater at the Music and Speech building on October 14, 2013. Photo by Leah Klafcznyski

Alicia Balog

Even while singing “I Will Be Me,” freshmen theatre majors got the opportunity to perform characters outside their personalities during the freshmen showcase, “Songs from ‘Homemade Fusion,’ ” Monday night.

The freshmen spent two weeks practicing three or four hours a day, Monday through Friday. Director Emily Schrader, senior theatre studies major, said she loved working with the freshmen, who were so “moldable.”

“They’re so bright and so youthful and so ready to just learn,” Schrader said. “And that’s been a real joy to kind of work with people who are moldable and willing to just try anything or do anything.”

The freshmen performed songs and scenes about love, dating and being themselves.

Freshman theatre studies major Bria Neal said she was really nervous, especially performing in front of college students.

“I’m just used to high school little performances where, like, no one’s really there,” she said.

Neal performed “Random Black Girl,” a song about being the stereotypical black girl in the show.

“I can be all sassy, and that’s not how I am in real life at all, so it’s like I get to be a different character,” she said.

Freshman theatre studies major Kyle Burnett said he never auditioned for shows growing up in a military family, so when he found out about the freshmen showcase, he auditioned.

He performed “The Temp and the Receptionist,” “To Excess” and “The Drag of Dating.”

“To Excess” is a song about a stalker and his love, Claire.

“I heard it before, and I thought it was hysterical,” Burnett said. “And then I’m like ‘How are we going to make this my own?’ So I was just listening to it, and I couldn’t stop laughing. I kept dying of laughter. I couldn’t breathe at one point.”

He also enjoyed participating in “The Drag of Dating” and wearing a dress for the first time.

“It’s just a different character,” Burnett said. “It’s really fun to be out of yourself. That’s what I love about theatre — you get to be someone different. Just like being a sassy queen is so funny, and just it’s so much fun.”

Schrader said her favorite number was the finale because it brought all the freshmen together and builds a sense of community.

“I will not fail. I will not fall. I will rise up above every obstacle,” she said, quoting a line in the song. “That for me is when the show really comes to a head and it’s when they all get to just celebrate with one another.”

Senior biology major Mike Kelly said he was really impressed by the freshmen.

“Just getting up there and being able to make something this good was just impressive,” Kelly said.

Youngstown State student Denny Monroe was also impressed by the class.

“It’s a big class. It’s a strong class. It’s got a lot of promise,” he said.

Kelly and Monroe both enjoyed “Lost in the Waves,” sung by freshmen theatre studies major Tim Tell.

“He is the most mature voice among them I think,” Monroe said.

The freshmen will perform a second and final showing of “Songs from ‘Homemade Fusion’ ” on Tuesday at 7 p.m. in the Blackbox Theatre. Only the first 120 people will be allowed in.

Alicia Balog is an assigning editor for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact her at [email protected].