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Senior musical theatre students 'turn the page' as undergraduate performers

The group of senior musical theatre majors performed at Viva Maria's in Ada on November 12 for the first phase of their senior capstone project. (Northern Review photo/Kasy Long)

The group of senior musical theatre majors performed at Viva Maria's in Ada on November 12 for the first phase of their senior capstone project. (Northern Review photo/Kasy Long)

Walking along the hallways of Ohio Northern University’s Freed Center for the Performing Arts it is common to hear singing, see tap dancing or observing students sharing hugs before reviewing the cast list posting for an upcoming theater production. 

This artistic process helps musical theatre students form a family, as evident by this year’s six senior musical theatre students—Elena Coleman, Madeline Gish, Joshua Heard, Katherine Hotz, Molly Moreau and Nick Sobotka—who are ready to become professional, working actors and dancers. 

These performers stepped away from the college stage to serenade the Ada community with “Turning the Page: A Senior Cabaret” on Nov. 12 at Viva Maria’s restaurant.

This special event featured tunes from popular Broadway tunes: “Wicked,” “Rent,” “The Last Five Years” and “Finding Neverland.” The song playlist was organized so each student had at least one solo, as well as a variety of duets and group performances. Gish performed "You Can't Be Everything You Want" from the musical "Next Thing You Know" during the cabaret. 

Some of us had planned lists of songs that would fit our group for a long time because we were just so excited to become seniors!” Hotz exclaimed. “Others just picked new songs that showcased their voices in a particular way, or songs that were from a favorite show of theirs.”

She later added, “I felt so blessed to have all of my friends and family there, and even strangers that were there to listen to some live entertainment. Everyone was very attentive. The venue was super fun, and the atmosphere was casual, which is my favorite kind of environment to perform in as a singer.”

The best aspect of the event is that the six seniors had another opportunity to perform together.

I wouldn’t have wanted to share that experience with anyone else,” Hotz added.

The seniors will spend the spring semester preparing for their final senior showcase in Chicago, where there may be possible auditions for professional acting jobs.