Story and Photos by Karis Fuller
Members of the LIU Post class of 2022 freshman theater majors will end their first year with their first PTC mainstage show, the Freshman Showcase, this spring. The showcase consists of two shows, one directed by adjunct theater professor Lauren Reinhard and the other by adjunct theater professor David Apichell. The entire freshman theater class will have roles in the performance, both on and off stage. The opening and closing numbers in both shows involve the whole cast, and in between are several individual scenes with the same underlying theme, to showcase the first year acting talents.
However, a show isn’t a show without the support of the crew, many of whom are second or third year students in the LIU Post theater department. This is the first show that Emily Shoup, a sophomore, will be designing. “I’m excited to have a big portion where I’m in charge of something, rather than just being the assistant,” she said. Shoup will be assisting Apichell’s concept. “He gave me full reign on the spaceship chairs,” a big prop in the show, Shoup said.
Although the themes and titles for the two pieces haven’t been announced, the lighting and costume designers are hard at work. LIU Post junior Kiely Boyington is in charge of the lighting plan for both shows.
“Designing lights for any show isn’t easy. It takes a lot of work and brainstorming and experimentation. It has a very creative side to it that not everyone understands,” Boyington said. “Doing two shows at once doesn’t add a lot to the challenge; it just creates double the work. I am now working with two design teams, two directors, two stage managers, two casts, and two sets of shows.” Boyington is fully aware of the importance of her role. “Without someone doing lights, there would be no world, especially for these first year showcases,” she said. “When there is a minimal set, like in these shows, the lighting designer’s main responsibility is to create this universe for the characters. A simple shift in light color is the difference between being in Alaska or the desert.”
LIU Post sophomore Sami Eddy is responsible for costume design for Reinhard’s cast. “I have to dress 26 cast members,” Eddy said. Eddy believes that the costumes can really bring a piece to life, as well as making the actors’ job easier to embody their character. “I feel like clothing and what you put on your body is an expression of who you are as a person, so doing research into who these characters are, where they’re from what they do, they’re wearing that on their body,” she said.
Eddy, like Boyington is experienced in her craft, and highlights the importance of not only costumes but the entire crew. “You can do so much personal work on your character but once you got the clothing on and you look in the mirror and you see who your character is, it really ties everything together,” Eddy said, “same with the set, interacting with the world around you it’s all essential to making good theater happen.”
The LIU Post Freshman Showcase hits the main stage of The Little Theatre on the LIU Post campus in Brookville on April 11. (Show 1: April 11 & 13 at 7:30 p.m. & April 14 @ 3 p.m. | Show 2: April 12 &14 at 7:30 p.m. & April 13 at 3 p.m.). Tickets are available at the box office or online (https://tix55.com/ptc700/). Tickets are $15 general admission and $10 for students.
This article was originally published in the Pioneer, LIU Post’s award-winning student newspaper, www.liupostpioneer.com, and is republished by Blank Slate Media with the permission of the Pioneer.