Calvin College Chimes

“Hairspray” no longer showing for spring 2019

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“Hairspray” no longer showing for spring 2019

Photo courtesy of calvin.edu

Photo courtesy of calvin.edu

Photo courtesy of calvin.edu

Photo courtesy of calvin.edu

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Calvin Theater Company will not be producing “Hairspray” in the spring of 2019 because a professional touring group will be performing the musical within a 100 mile radius of Calvin. The Calvin Theater Company (CTC) will be performing “Peter and the Starcatcher,” a prequel to the story of Peter Pan, in the coming spring.

Debra Freeberg, the CTC director, said this is not unheard of.

“If a professional company secures the rights to produce the show, then a region can be restricted until the tour passes through. Obviously, the revenues generated from a professional production make more money in royalties than a small venue like the Gezon.”

“As a graduating senior,” said Liesl Bruxvoort, who was cast in “Hairspray” as Prudy Pingleton, Penny’s mother. “This news was very disappointing. It is now very unlikely that I will be able to participate in the show.” Though Bruxvoort was particularly excited about performing in “Hairspray,” she will likely audition for the replacement musical.

“Fortunately, the theatre staff had already been working on the next season selection of plays. We had tentatively decided to produce ‘Peter and the Starcatcher’ in the fall. Since we all agreed that it would be a terrific show for CTC and for our audiences, it was simply a matter of swapping performance slots,” said Freeberg.

Auditions for “Peter and the Starcatcher” will be held on January 29 and 30. The cast will be much smaller than “Hairspray.” In addition, “Peter and the Starcatcher” has far fewer musical numbers and can be considered more of a play. “This will give seniors and other students a chance to be part of a smaller scale musical,” Freeberg said.

“We are the kind of folks that will look for the good in a difficult situation,” said Freeberg. “Part of the nature of our work is problem-solving and finding creative ways to make things happen. CTC students have been supportive and encouraging.”

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