Earlier this month Dr. Kate Roark directed her final show and took her last bow at Blackburn. The musical, which was “On the Town,” is based in the 1940s. It follows three sailors and their experiences during a 24-hour leave from the ship. The ship is docked in no other place than New York, New York, so there are surprises and mischief throughout the entire show. Like most musicals, there is love, humor, drama and fun within the plot that make a great storyline and energetic show.
Roark stated, “All my shows at Blackburn have been ambitious in some way, and “On The Town” is ambitious in dance and music! This show has required two student choreographers- Ajay Minton and Lisa Knight- who have done a truly stellar job. And the student dancers- wow! Audiences are in for a rare treat in ‘On The Town!’ In addition to the highly-skilled dancers, we have amazing singers and really gifted comic actors in the show, plus brilliantly creative scenery, props and costumes from the talented theater tuition workers. Honestly, this show has everything and then some. I couldn’t be prouder.”
The props and set pieces, constructed by the theater workers, added a whole different level to the show. There was a standing dinosaur skeleton designed and created by freshman Victoria Lee and intricate set pieces crafted and created by Teora Schumacher and Kirsten Montgomery. The costumes took you back in time to a more glamorous place in a city that has only grown and it was truly amazing. These were put together by Katherine Beeler and Lee.
The lead female character is Hildy Esterhazy, a taxi driver who is played by junior Abigayle Groves. This was Groves’ musical debut at Blackburn and she could not be more proud of everyone who helped pull off the show. “Hildy is such a fun part to play and I am so grateful that I was given this opportunity,” said Groves. “It’s such a great show and I was blessed with the greatest cast imaginable.”
Roark added, “I’m proud of the work I’ve done with Blackburn students, alums, and the community. We’ve done miraculous things, and I’ll miss many people here.”