By Ashton Tibbitt, Catawba College Class of 2014
"Hello, Dolly!," a romantic comedy about finding love in unexpected places, is the Catawba College Theatre Arts Department's musical performance of the season.
"Hello, Dolly!" will be performed at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 11, Friday, Nov. 12, and Saturday, Nov. 13 in Keppel Auditorium on campus.
Directed by Professor Missy Barnes with Music Direction and Conducting by David Hagy, this production also features student choreographer senior Mary Alice Nichols of Conyers, Ga. Vocal Coach is Professor Martha Bartz with accompanist Susan Trivette. Designers include Professor David Pulliam (scenic); Professor Erin Dougherty (costumes); Professor Christopher D. Zink (lighting); with sophomore Gabi Bressi of Villanova, Pa., as assistant hair and makeup designer.
Set in the late 1800s in Yonkers and New York, N.Y., the show centers around Dolly Levi, a widowed, self-proclaimed "meddler." Through the show, Dolly tries to find love for the central characters, all while also trying to get what she wants.
With music and lyrics by Jerry Herman, and book by Michael Stewart, the musical is based of the Thorntan Wilder play, "The Matchmaker." During the original run, "Hello, Dolly!" won 11 Tony awards and broke the record for longest running musical on Broadway.
Director Missy Barnes calls the show "awe-inspiritingly brilliant," while Stage Manager Kat Tierney urges everyone to see the show because "it showcases so many of our wonderful, talented students."
The leading players of the cast include senior Shanna Locklair of Lewes, Del., as Dolly Levi; senior Mara Stewart of Hurricane, W.Va., as Irene Molloy; senior Amber McCleerey of Hendersonville as Minnie Fay; sophomore Kylie Beinke of Cary as Ermengarde; junior Robin Tynes of Black Mountain as Ernestina; senior Rachel Mehaffey of Leonardtown, Md., as Mrs. Rose; senior Zach Roe of Connelly Springs as Horace Vandergelder; senior Mike Innis of Mint Hill as Cornelius Hackl; junior Zach McRae of Hendersonville as Barnaby Tucker; and senior Zack Lynch of Selbyville, Del., as Ambrose Kemper.
The women's ensemble includes sophomore Sydney Berk of Encino, Calif.; senior Christine Caldemeyer of Mills River; junior Kat Campagna of Watertown, Conn.; sophomore Katie Carpenter of Hickory; sophomore Jodye Carroll of Mount Pleasant, S.C.; sophomore Dee Clarke of Kannapolis; sophomore Julie Dean of Greenwood, S.C.; sophomore Bristol Glass of Concord; sophomore Katie Hopkins of Albemarle; sophomore Collette Riddle of Roanoke, Va.; junior Abbey Shoaf of Pfafftown; and junior Danielle Smith of Charlotte.
The men's ensemble includes junior Canaan Cox, sophomore Chris Fink, and junior Quinn McRae of Hendersonville; senior Tony Mullins of Somerset, N.J.; junior Vaughn Pollman of Overland Park, Kansas; sophomore Jeffrey Salerno of Lake Mary, Fla.; sophomore Rayshaun Sandlin of Knightdale, N.C.; sophomore Michael Stone of Erwin; junior Jered Shults of Sevierville, Tenn.; and senior Dustin Sullivan of Monroe.
Actor/Technicians include freshman Ashton Tibbitt of Sanford; sophomore Sean Henderson of Concord; sophomore Gabriella Bressi of Villanova, Pa.; and sophomore Courtney Cowman of Hamilton, N.J.
Student leaders on the technical side of the production include sophomore Tommy Hawfield of Monroe, assistant technical director; senior Kat Tierney of Smyrna, Ga., stage manager; junior Autumn Hamilton of Conyers, Ga., and junior Mackenzie Westbrook of Charlotte, assistant stage managers; sophomore Chris Speer of Hamptonville as Master Carpenter; senior Cassie Bell of Leonardtown, Md., as Master Electrician; sophomore John Millbank of Carrboro as Deck Captain; freshman Jacquelyn Loy of Burlington, Front of House; junior Claire Robinson of Houston, Texas, Cutter/Draper; sophomore Katie Hopkins of Albemarle, First Hand; junior KaShara Davis of Charlotte, Props Master; and junior Annabelle Prince of Charlotte as Scenic Charge Artist.
Tickets are $12 for adults and $10 for senior citizens and non-Catawba students. For more details, contact the Catawba College theatre box office at (704) 637-4481, or buy tickets online at www.showtix4u.com.
PHOTOS: "Hello Dolly!" Theatre Production