'Pastiche' highlights variety of talents

Matthew Crooks had no idea Linda Hope could sing so well.

Crooks, a Kansas University sophomore, mainly knew Hope as the manager of audience services for University Theatre. But recently she's been onstage, her character trying to seduce his young, impressionable character in a scene from "A Streetcar Named Desire."

"It's very hot, let me tell you," Crooks says.

The scene will be part of "Pastiche," a first-ever performance at University Theatre that is aimed both at getting student actors on stage earlier in the semester and raising money for an upcoming University Theatre trip to Lithuania.

The show, which starts at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday in the Crafton-Preyer Theatre in Murphy Hall, features more than 20 acts that include vocal solos, scenes from plays and musicals, a piano solo, puppetry, monologues and short films. Faculty, staff and students will all be on stage.

"The Collage Concert (held each September in the Lied Center) is much more about taking the whole School of Fine Arts and saying, 'We have these groups, and as these groups we do different things,'" says John Staniunas, University Theatre director and chairman of the theater and film department. "'Pastiche' is much more about the individual talents. We just want to pretty much have a fun night. It's about kicking back and enjoying the theater."

Performances include:

¢ "Amor" by William Bolcom, a vocal solo by Joyce Castle, KU professor of voice.

¢ A medley of movie themes on the piano by John Tibbetts, associate professor of film studies.

¢ An original monologue by John Gronbeck-Tedesco, professor of theater and film.

¢ Puppetry by Spencer Lott, a freshman from Lawrence.

¢ "Simple" from the musical "Nine," sung by Whitney Juneau, a sophomore from Lawrence.

Staniunas says in past years it has taken too long to get students on stage for the fall semester. "Pastiche," which roughly means hodgepodge, not only alleviates that, but it also showcases talents not always seen in the department.

He hopes the show becomes an annual tradition.




See the show

What: "Pastiche," a variety show organized by University Theatre at Kansas University When: 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday Where: Crafton Preyer Theatre, Murphy Hall Cost: $10, available at the University Theatre, 864-3982; Lied Center, 864-ARTS; or Student Union Activities, 864-7469

"The world's your oyster when it comes to something like this," Staniunas says. "This will end up being an endless pot of gold. Every year, talents will bubble up."

This year, the show will help seven University Theatre students travel to Lithuania in December to perform "The Snow Queen" with Lithuanian students at the National Drama Theatre in Vilnius.

The show, by Romas Vikshraitis, made its stage debut in December 2005 at KU. After several performances in Lithuania this December, it will become a permanent offering at Elfu Teatras, the theater company Vikshraitis directs.

"It's so exciting to be able to work with students that are our age but performing over in that area," says Alicia Gian, a graduate student from Garden City who plans to make the trip. "It's a totally different perspective on theater."

Crooks, who is from Stilwell, is looking forward to making the trip as well - if he survives his "hot" time onstage during "Pastiche."

"I've got to watch a lot of the different acts," he says, "and this has a lot of really fun varieties in a variety show."




















'Pastiche' perfomers

A full list of performing acts at "Pastiche": ¢ Opening with a performance of world drumming and chanting, choreographed by John Staniunas, director of University Theatre, presented by Stacey Fox, Oldfather Studios technical director, and her troupe of Maria Anthony, Barry Barnes, Megan Hurt and Clark Jamison, along with the "Pastiche" Student Core Ensemble. ¢ "Amor" by William Bolcom, featuring mezzo-soprano Joyce Castle, KU professor of voice and an internationally known opera performer. ¢ A scene from "A Streetcar Named Desire" by Tennessee Williams, featuring Linda Hope, University Theatre manager of audience services, as Blanche Dubois, and Matthew Crooks, Stilwell sophomore, as the Newspaper Collector. ¢ "Simple," from the musical "Nine," by Maury Yeston, sung by Whitney Juneau, Lawrence sophomore. ¢ "Fallin'" from the musical "They're Playing Our Song" by Marvin Hamlisch and Carole Bayer-Sager, performed by David Stogsdill, Lawrence junior. ¢ "Vanilla Ice Cream" from the musical "She Loves Me" by Bock and Harnick, sung by Leslie Bennett, assistant professor of theatre and film. ¢ "The Hat," an original monologue, presented by Adam Burnett, Topeka junior. ¢ "A Singing Pastiche" by the Glass Coffee Table, a vocal ensemble. ¢ "Don't Cry for Me Argentina" from the musical "Evita" by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice, sung by Alicia Gian, Garden City graduate student. ¢ "Big Ass Rock" from the musical "The Full Monty" by David Yazbek, performed by Lawrence Henderson, Lansing senior; Stephen A. Ferrell, Perry senior; and Jonathan Matteson, Leavenworth junior. ¢ A "Piano Pastiche," played by John Tibbetts, associate professor of film studies. ¢ "As Long As He Needs Me" from the musical "Oliver" by Lionel Bart, sung by Gail Trottier, the cutter/draper in the University Theatre Costume Shop. ¢ "And I'm Telling You I'm Not Going" from the musical "Dreamgirls" by Henry Krieger and Tom Eyen, performed by DeAndrea Herron, San Antonio, Texas, junior. ¢ An original monologue by John Gronbeck-Tedesco, professor of theatre and film. ¢ An African Dance performed by Omofolabo Ajayi, associate professor of theatre and women's studies. Ajayi will dance only on Sept. 15. ¢ "Baby Boy Starring Tyrese" and "Puppets," presented by Spencer Lott, Lawrence freshman, puppeteer, accompanied by Baiowolf, comprised of Robert Schulte, Lee's Summit, Mo., junior, and Sean Wilson, Lawrence senior. ¢ "Pirate Jenny" from the musical "The Threepenny Opera" by Kurt Weill, sung by Henry Bial, assistant professor of theatre and film. ¢ "Who Will Love Me As I Am?" from the musical "Side Show" by Henry Krieger and KU alumnus Bill Russell, presented by Gian and Andi Porter, Roeland Park sophomore. ¢ "Puttin' on the Ritz" by Irving Berlin, performed by Robbie Fowler, Topeka freshman; Chris Trepinski, Lawrence sophomore, and Lott. ¢ "Why Do The Wrong People Travel?" by Noel Coward, sung by Mechele Leon, assistant professor of theatre and film. ¢ "Buddy's Blues" from the musical "Follies" by Stephen Sondheim, performed by Staniunas, Julie Bayliff, Lenexa sophomore, and Lauren Marshall, Salina senior. ¢ Finale, "The Impossible Dream" from the musical "Man of La Mancha" by Mitch Leigh and Joe Darion, will be performed by various students.

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