Assoc.Arts & Culture Editor
Show tunes from “Next to Normal,” “Shrek the Musical,” “Ghost the Musical” and “Aida” were among the songs featured in the 2013 All Campus Musical Organization’s Fall Showcase. The Showcase was held on November 1 at 7:30 p.m. and November 2 at 2 p.m. in the Clair Performance Hall in the Winter Visual and Performing Arts Center and was directed by student Katerina Bergerstock, with assistant director Christian Kriebel and musical director Jenn Kelman.
Like past Fall Showcases, the cast wore black during the performance with occasional accented pieces for certain songs. The song choices included a variety of show tunes from Broadway musicals, pop songs, and songs from movie soundtracks.
After an opening with the entire cast singing “Just the Way You Are/Just A Dream” from the “Pitch Perfect” soundtrack, the male ensemble took the stage with an energetic take of “Sing” by My Chemical Romance with solos from Aaron Dake, Jeremy Hammer and Joshua Sell. Katie Dobson sang “Out Here on My Own” from “Fame” and Paul Drellock-Hughes performed “Make A Move” from “Shrek the Musical” with a few female backup singers wearing oversized glasses.
Next, Taylor Pieczynski stepped onto the stage wearing a sparkling dark gown to sing a soft rendition of “There’s A World” from “Next to Normal.” This was followed by part of the ensemble and soloists Olivia Synoracki, Josiah Huyard and Aaron Dake singing “Suspend My Disbelief/I Had a Life” from “Ghost the Musical.” Ashley Ciortan, Sarah Ward, Hannah Meier, Julia Melbert and Skye Hewish-Schmid then delivered an upbeat, sassy performance of “Zero to Hero” from the movie “Hercules” with the girls interacting with each other playfully and bringing plenty of spirit to their performance.
“Freak Flag” from “Shrek the Musical” featured a big ensemble and a wide variety of soloists as they sang a song about being an outcast. Followed by that fun, energetic performance, Amy Ward delivered a heartfelt performance of “With You” from “Ghost the Musical.”
Josiah Huyard, Natalie James and Colin DiLucido sang “Those You’ve Known” from “Spring Awakening,” a song that plays at the end of the musical where one of the main characters is looking over the graves of two of his friends, and their spirits come back to comfort him. Huyard and James were dressed in white, symbolizing the two spirits, during this piece and sang their parts from the platforms off the sides of the stage. Then, at towards the end of the piece, they slowly joined DiLucido onstage, took each others hands and sang the last few verses of the song.
Sarah Ward and Skye Hewish-Schmid partnered up for a soulful duet of “I Am Yours” by Scott Alan. Then, Joey Bertoni, accompanied by part of the ensemble, sang “I Believe” from “The Book of Mormon.” It was a whimsical song that pokes fun at several Mormon traits, such as their desire to spread good will and their belief that Jesus has His own planet.
The next song, “Wish I Were Here” from “Next to Normal,” featured a duet from Julia Melbert and Kelly Mulligan and part of the ensemble. Then, the entire female ACMO ensemble took the stage to perform the pumping, attitude-filled, girl power ballad “Wings” by the British girl group Little Mix, with solos from Mulligan and LaShaunta Smith.
David Hassler, Natalie James, Amber Adams and Joey Bertoni performed the song “Like Breathing,” a slow, soft, and uplifting song from “Edges” that displayed all four of the singers’ vocal ranges.
Last but not least, the entire showcase cast joined together, with soloists Katie Dobson and Mark Rismiller, for “The Gods Love Nubia” from “Aida,” a powerful song about the never-dying spirit of the country of Nubia.
The 2013 ACMO Fall Showcase included songs that ranged from fun, upbeat and humorous to touching and beautiful. The next ACMO show will be their spring musical, “Elton John and Tim Rice’s Aida,” and auditions for this musical will start within the next few weeks.