At the end of the first day of classes, students and arts faculty gathered in Bannan Theatre for SI's Performing Arts kickoff announcements.
Performing Arts faculty and staff introduced themselves and explained the different ways students can participate in music, dance, or drama this year. Whether Jazz Band, Orchestra, Piano Recital, Mixed Chorus, Chamber Singers, Dance, Cabaret Showcase, Fall Play, Spring Musical, Stage Crew, or another outlet, there are a multitude of ways students can participate in SI's Performing Arts programs.
- Jazz Band Director Galen Green expressed excitement about performing music from Count Basie, Henry Mancini, and Charlie Parker.
- Orchestra Director Dr. Gillian Clements reminded students about the opportunity to perform in the annual Piano Recital. She also said that in addition to learning rock orchestra and classical hits for the winter concert, Orchestra, Jazz Band, and Choral groups will collaborate for the spring pops concert, scheduled for May.
- Choral Director Audrey Gomes announced the theme for choral groups this year will be Singing Together, a celebration of harmonizing in person after so much time physically distant.
- Dance Director Emily Schick introduced a new colleague in SI Dance, Rachel Garcia. She also shared that the December dance concert will be themed Moments and will take its inspiration from iconic moments in popular television shows and movies.
- Ms. Schick also said the SI Cabaret Showcase this year will be comprised of numbers from rock musicals.
The presentation concluded with Director of Performing Arts Ted Curry ’82 announcing SI's theatre productions for the 2021-2022 school year.
The fall play will be "Radium Girls." Set between 1918 and 1928, "Radium Girls" is written by D.W. Gregory and based on the true story of female factory workers who suffered radiation poisoning while working in factories with self-luminous paint.
A fast-paced production full of warmth and humor, the play tells a story about greed, wealth, the environment, science, and courage. One of the workers, Grace, fights for justice even as her health deteriorates, not only taking on her employer, but also facing conflict with her family and friends, who fear what her battle will mean for them.
In his announcement, Curry said, "I picked 'Radium Girls' because it has a large cast, with more than 30 parts. There are leads, there are supporting leads, there are featured roles, and there are ensemble roles. It also has an uplifting and empowering message about how one person can stand up for what's right."
The spring musical will be "Carrie." Adapted from the classic Stephen King novel — and developed after the Brian De Palma film starring Sissy Spacek — "Carrie" is about a lonely teenage girl with telekinetic powers. Beset by her domineering mother and cruel classmates, Carrie unleashes her full powers at her high school prom, with dire consequences.
Though the original Broadway production closed after only a few performances and there was no official original cast recording, the show has become a cult favorite, with renewed appreciation in recent years for how it addresses adolescence and Carrie's efforts to define herself. The show received an off-Broadway revival in 2012, with some revisions, and that cast recorded an album.
"The music for this show is phenomenal," Curry said. "We plan to have Ben Prince back as our music director, and this is his favorite show, so he's going to kill it."
"Carrie" has music by Michael Gore, lyrics by Dean Pitchford, and a book by Lawrence D. Cohen.
Students were informed at the meeting about audition information, which is also listed on the Performing Arts section of the SI website. That section also includes information about when to buy tickets, and you can explore to see videos and learn more about all of SI's Arts programs.