CCM brings one of Hollywood’s most-loved musicals to life with a graceful stage adaptation of Singin’ in the Rain, running Oct. 31 through Nov. 3 in UC’s Corbett Auditorium.
Based on the 1952 American musical comedy film of the same name, Singin’ in the Rain offers a lighthearted depiction of Hollywood during the transition from silent films to “talkies.” The story centers on popular silent film star Don Lockwood (originally portrayed by Gene Kelly, who also choreographed and co-directed the classic film), his shallow leading lady Lina Lamont, his sidekick Cosmo Brown and aspiring actress Kathy Selden.
CCM Professor of Musical Theatre and resident choreographer Diane Lala directs this production, which she describes as a “wonderful revisiting of a true classic.” The recipient of the 2012 Big Easy Theater Award for Best Choreography and the 2011 Big Easy Theatre Award for Best Director, Lala also collaborates with Adjunct Assistant Professor of Musical Theatre/Dance Patti James on the choreography of this dance-filled production, which she promises will showcase a wide variety of different dance forms, from ballet to tap and beyond.
Graduate student Ryan Sigurdson provides musical direction under the supervision of Associate Professor of Musical Theatre Roger Grodsky. With a glorious score by Nacio Herb Brown and lyrics by Arthur Freed, standards such as “Good Morning,” “Make ‘em Laugh,” “You Are My Lucky Star” and the legendary “Singin’ in the Rain” will have audience members leaving the theater humming.
Of course it wouldn’t be Singin’ in the Rain without buckets of rain, silent films and “talkies” from the original movie. Before proposing this production, Lala approached CCM’s Department of Theatre Design and Production and Division of Electronic Media to ensure that her vision for the show was possible. “For a show like this to be able to happen, it takes a village,” Lala explains. With scenic design by Mark Halpin, technical direction by Steve Miller, multimedia expertise of Electronic Media Professors Kevin Burke and Lakshmi Tirumala and student video director Sam Pennybacker, this production has provided ample opportunities for interdepartmental and interdisciplinary collaboration. This production of Singin’ in the Rain even involved Professor of Drama and resident Fight Master k. Jenny Jones, who choreographed the fighting and stage combat for one of the silent movies featured in the show. The result is a live performance that will be filled with films, flashbacks and falling rain.