By Maggie Kane
During the spring production of “Tommy,” 31 cast members will flood the stage to perform song and dance numbers. This is the largest show that the College has undertaken, with the total number of students involved coming in at more than 70.
“It’s a lot of different energy,” said senior Dwight Trice, actor and dance captain for “Tommy.”
The show has also brought in people from outside of Kalamazoo College to help with the production. Rachel Miller of Wellspring/Cory Terry & Dancers did the dance choreography and Matt Shabala, a local pianist who plays for the area theaters, plays at the rehearsals. “[It’s] another voice from the outside world that really makes a huge difference,” Jon Reeves, Director of Technical Theater, said.
Reeves said that the biggest challenges in managing such a large cast and crew has to do with scheduling. “They really come down to the wonderfully overachieving K College student who wants to be involved in everything,” Reeves said.
The cast size has allowed for new people to try out theater, said Becky Dennis, an actor and assistant director. “I was excited to have other people try out for the show from different departments,” she said.
In contrast, juniors Hutch Pimentel and Sam Bertken will be staging drastically smaller productions during sixth week as part of Ed Menta’s Advanced Directing class. Both shows have three-person casts. “You get to know everyone really well,” Pimentel said. “Everyone can feel like their voice is heard.” Bertken agreed, saying that smaller numbers allow for closeness between the actors and the director.
Check out The Who’s YouTube account here to see more videos like the one below. Here’s a music video for their song “I’m Free”: