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items tagged with South Pacific

"Blonde" Ambition: Lauren VanSpeybroeck Reflects on Her (Pre-College) Theatrical Career
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Feature Stories

2014-07-02 12:00:00

Lauren VanSpeybroeck, courtesy of Nick West PhotographyAs with many things in life, it can be blamed on a friendly purple dinosaur.

“I used to be obsessed with Barney,” says area actor Lauren VanSpeybroeck of her pre-school interest in performing. “I always used to pretend I was on Barney [& Friends], so I guess that’s where it started. And then I would see, say, The Wizard of Oz or something, and for that week, I would be Dorothy Gale from Kansas. My mom would take me to the grocery store and people would say, ‘Oh, you’re so cute – what’s your name?’ ‘Dorothy Gale from Kansas.’

“That,” says VanSpeybroeck with a laugh, “was probably when my mom was like, ‘Hmmm ... maybe she wants to play characters ... ?’”


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Yes, They Shall Dance: Jonathan and Rochelle Schrader Get (Semi-)Romantic in Countryside Community Theatre's "The King & I"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Feature Stories

2012-06-19 12:01:00

 

Rochelle and Jonathan Schrader in The King & ILocal audiences have seen married actors Jonathan and Rochelle Schrader appearing opposite one another numerous times over the years: in Opera@Augustana's The Pirates of Penzance and The Mikado; in the former Green Room Theatre’s Into the Woods; and in Quad City Music Guild’s Babes in Toyland.

But with Countryside Community Theatre’s presentation of The King & I, running June 22 through 30 at Eldridge’s North Scott High School, patrons will see the Schraders interact in a way that, on-stage at least, they never have before.

“This is the first time we’ve actually gotten to play semi-romantically together,” says Jonathan, who enacts the titular, short-tempered King of Siam – a role made legendary by Yul Brynner – opposite his wife’s stalwart schoolteacher Anna. “I’ve played her father several times, and I tried to kill her in Babes in Toyland, but ... .”


Read More About Yes, They Shall Dance: Jonathan And Rochelle Schrader Get (Semi-)Romantic In Countryside Community Theatre's "The King & I"...


Eight Times Five: Ensembles, Musical Numbers, Stagecraft, Couples, Newcomers, Collegiate Performers, Minors, & Exits
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Feature Stories

2009-12-21 12:00:00

Five Inspiring Ensembles

Powerful lead performances and scene-stealing supporting turns are always welcome; one- and two-character shows can be a gas. But for my money, nothing quite beats the theatrical pleasure of watching a tightly knit ensemble in action, and the following five productions ensured that this pleasure was a continual one.

 


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Ocean Breeze: "South Pacific," at North Scott High School through June 27
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2009-06-22 22:13:08

Andrea Millea and Joe Urbaitis in South PacificSouth Pacific comes to us with an intimidating load of pedigreed baggage: Pulitzer Prizes, Tony Awards, Rodgers & Hammerstein. And if you add its dramatic World War II setting, its themes of interracial romance and prejudice, its enormous scenic drops and set pieces, and its cast of two dozen plus, it'd be enough for Countryside Community Theatre's current production of the piece to be impressive, and it most certainly is that.


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Get Off the Horse and Pick Up a Shovel: Jay Berkow Finds the Reality in Circa ’21’s "Oklahoma!"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Feature Stories

2007-05-30 08:33:30

Jay Berkow As the director of music theatre performance at Western Michigan University, Jay Berkow is well aware of the historical significance of Oklahoma!, which he is currently directing for the Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse.

"It is kind of the grandfather, or the progenitor, of the contemporary musical-theatre piece," Berkow says, referencing the work's fame as one of the first "book musicals" in American theatre, wherein songs are fully integrated into the drama, and the lyrics and score are as essential to character understanding as dialogue.


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