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USU students perform ‘Sondheim on Sondheim’

February 8th, 2015 Posted in Arts and Life

By Sarah Keyes

Starting Tuesday evening and concluding with two shows on Saturday, students of the Caine College of the Arts at Utah State University performed “Sondheim on Sondheim” at the Caine Lyric Theatre in downtown Logan.

The cast of nine Utah State students started rehearsing for the program, their first spring production, in October. Excluding holiday breaks, the cast had three-hour practices six days a week, and sometimes even more.

Cast member Kimberly Muhlestein said she spent more than 200 hours rehearsing for the play, an impressionistic look at the life’s work of one of the most famous and prolific contributors to American musical theater.

“It is absolutely worth the long hours spent rehearsing when I get to share the message with everyone who comes to see the show,” she said.

The musical’s actors play themselves, taking on roles as various characters throughout the production.

“The show is a different format than a musical usually is,” said Jared Campbell, a cast member and music therapy major. “It’s more of a musical review, including video interviews of Stephen Sondheim himself. He is the star of the show, not the actors.”

Both Campbell and Muhlestein agree Sondheim’s music and lyrics are difficult to learn, but the show might be even more difficult for the audience to fully comprehend.

“Its not an easy show to understand,” Muhlestein said. “There are a lot of lyrics coming at you fast. If you really commit to listening, it can be a moving experience.”

According to Muhlestein, attending the musical makes audience members gain a deeper appreciation for composers, specifically Stephen Sondheim.

“You realize they didn’t live such glamorous lives,” Muhlestein said. “They put their heart and soul into what they do.”

The cast included Molly Cameron, Belen Moyano, Kimberly Muhlestein, Rebecca Soelberg, Kyra Sorensen, Stirling Brenna, Jared Campbell, Michael Francis and Zedrick Evans.

Information on future Caine productions is available at arts.usu.edu.


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