Thursday, September 18, 2008

Myers directs fun summer play

By Maria Sullivan
Arts and Entertainment Editor

This summer, Gilmore Creek Summer Theatre (GCST) presented three plays at Saint Mary’s University, one of which was the musical Little Shop of Horrors.

Little Shop of Horrors, directed by Associate Professor of Theater Arts Judy Myers, is about a young man named Seymour who becomes an immediate celebrity once he discovers an unusual plant. The plant, named Audrey II, has a strange desire for fresh blood. Audrey II promises Seymour fame and fortune only if he grants its wishes by feeding it fresh blood, but if Seymour resists, the lives of the people he loves the most are at risk of dying by Audrey II.

Myers said that she enjoyed working on this play. “It was a lot of fun. It’s one of my favorite shows. It was first popular when I was in undergraduate school, so when I was doing theatre we would always sing the songs from ‘Little Shop,’ but I’ve always wanted to direct it. It’s got such fun music and the story line is fun and it’s crazy with that plant,” said Myers.

Senior Tony Freeman is no stranger to GCST. In the first summer of GCST, Freeman directed the music and acted in Showtune and did sound for Lend Me a Tenor. This summer Freeman was the music director for Little Shop of Horrors.

Freeman said, “To work on a musical is an amazing experience. It’s an awesome feeling to be able to capture a story line and tell it through musical emotion.” Freeman said that the actors and directors worked 12 hour days preparing for the show. The main struggle for him as music director was to make sure the actors knew their singing parts before they began acting.

Freeman said, “GCST is an experience that any actor should try for a summer. It’s great to work with professional actors, musicians and technicians. It is also a treat for the community as well, to see comedies and musicals presented at SMU during the summer. It allows many opportunities for people to come see since there are many shows throughout July and August.”

Senior Jillian Reinboldt said, “I would definitely recommend GCST to everyone. I think they do a wonderful job with their productions, and offer a nice treat for those who are more interested in the technical side of productions.”

The two other plays that were included in GCST were The Foreigner, a comedy directed by SMU alum Steven Snyder, and the children’s play The Mouse Expedition, directed by Senior Sarah St. Laurent.

This was the second summer of GCST, and Myers has been the artistic director from the beginning. One of her responsibilities as artistic director is to choose the plays and the actors. Myers said that since GCST is a professional theater company she travels to St. Louis,

Mo., every February to the Midwest Theatre Auditions. It is there that Myers listens to each actor give about a two and a half minute preview of their singing and acting abilities. Myers said that about 70 different theatres attend this event to seek out the best actors for their plays.

GCST began because a number of staff members at SMU thought that

Winona should have a theatre company during the summer to bring a variety of theatre options to the community. Myers said that it is good because not everyone wants to go and see Shakespearean plays.

Myers said that as of now there are no plans as to what plays will be presented this coming summer, but three to four plays are being considered.

No comments: