By Contributing Writer Abigail Field
The UMass Dartmouth Theatre Company, TCo. (which stands for Theatre Company, if inquiring minds want to know), hosted its annual Broadway Revue last week. For those who do not know, and indeed, this humble writer was one of the naïve, a Broadway Revue is where actors and actresses perform their own renditions of Broadway songs. I would like to offer, for the record, that I am not a musical theatre aficionado, and would request that the reader excuse my inevitably poor understanding of the topic.
This year, the theme was a sort of good vs evil situation, with an evident focus on the “evil” aspect. From songs about ruining the lives of your cheerleading opponents to the Jekyll and Hyde dilemma of whether good and evil are really mutually exclusive, the performers and their musical talent absolutely slapped. “The Whole Being Dead Thing” was hilarious. “Carrie” was beautiful. “Hellfire”, one of my all-time favorite songs, made me squeal when I heard the Latin. The directors, Reilly Brenner and Kenzi Farland, were personable and funny when they came on stage between numbers.
I was somewhat confused about the male number. After having watched the all-female number perform a song from Jekyll and Hyde about the nature of good and evil, complete with hyper-sexualized dancing that reminded me somewhat of that from Chicago, I had expected a somewhat similar sexualization of the male-number. I was a tad confused to watch them perform sitting on the edge of the stage while singing “That’s Why You Love Me”, which is notably about the lack of appeal of “edgy ex-boyfriends”. That said, the actors were hilarious throughout the song and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I was just a bit thrown off by the imbalance in the choreography.
Audience member Samantha Wahl had a blast, saying the show had “so much vigor! It was a really colorful performance. It’s always great to see theatre embraced in the UMD community.”
“It was wonderful, and the cast was very talented! They clearly put a lot of work into it,” Mary Fryeburger, who was also an audience member in attendance, said.
Paige Zora (English Writing and Rhetoric, 2021), who watched the show noted how it was “beautiful and wonderful”. She followed up with how she “didn’t expect to laugh quite as much as [she] did!”
Kenzi Farland (Political Science, 2020) who co-directed the Revue said that “working with such easy going, fun, and professional people made this experience so much easier. Talent, blocking, and musical direction just fell into place. Every day I had rehearsal was the best day of the week! A lot of first year students participated, and I’m really happy that I was able to be a part of their first T Co show.”
Reilly Brenner (Psychology, 2022), who also co-directed said that the show was “one of the first shows where I actually had fun during tech week. Everyone in the cast was respectful and so much fun to work with. We became a family and everyone got along. It was a really good feeling!”
As for the actors and actresses, the consensus was definitely one of having had an excellent time. “This really was my first show,” said Vanessa Pino (Undeclared, 2023), “Coming here to do this show was very inspiring. I got to meet other people and still do what I love – music. It’s great to be able to get back on a stage when I had thought I was done performing.”
Kianna Wilson (Arts and Sciences, 2023) said it was her “first year and a good experience. I liked working with the directors and everyone. It was a really welcoming environment.”
“I’m really going to miss having something to look forward to to destress from the hustle and bustle of school,” said Isiah Jean-Fontaine (Computer Science, 2023). “I formed a family with this group, I’ll be sad to see them go. But I’m going to audition for another show!”
Dennis Fox (Graphic Design, 2020) said how “this production of Broadway Revue has felt like such a pleasant surprise as to how much the cast bonded and elevated Broadway to a whole new level. I’m so proud and overwhelmed by the freshmen who are killing it!”
If you’re looking to have a lovely and theatre-filled time, do go to watch their next show, Pride and Prejudice, or audition for Carrie. They really are a busy bunch!