Doctor Horrible Comes Alive on Stage
Photo by Emily Hoffmann Carl Swanson, senior; Blake Abram, sophomore; and Aaron Voeks, senior, perform "Bad Horse Phone Call" at rehearsal last week.

Doctor Horrible Comes Alive on Stage

Students and faculty were treated to the adaption of “Doctor Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog” this past Wednesday, April 16 as part of a senior project.

The production is originally a 45 minute “tragi-comedy musical” written by Joss Whedon, starring Neil Patrick Harris.

Lindsey Paquette, a graduating senior, directed the show.

“The show explores many different genres,” Paquette said.

“Doctor Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog” is famous for its twist ending and has a very avid following.

“I chose ‘Doctor Horrible’ because it’s pretty well known,” Paquette said. “It also had very few scene changes, so it was doable.”

“This was a really great directing experience,” Paquette said. “Especially because musicals are a lot more difficult than you’d think.”

The line for entrance into the theater before the performance stretched all the way across the NFAC from theater to theater. Admission was free, but donations to the “Reopen the Fox Theater” fund were appreciated.

This show brought several departments together, including music, theatre, communication, natural resources, political science, and art. Students in the production were not strictly theatre or music, and crew members represented many different parts of campus.

“It was great to meet people from the theater department,” said Allycia Zalac, a music student playing Penny. “They helped me learn more about acting!”

With just a few tables and chairs for a set, the students put on a show that many had seen only on their laptop screens.

The show was put together relatively quickly because it had to be produced in between official department shows. A few actors had just finished participating in an opera when they started rehearsals for the production.

The whole production came together in less than three weeks. Blocking for the show was done in three days.

Paquette recruited her friends and colleagues to be in her production. Aaron Voeks took the center stage as Billy/Doctor Horrible. He recommended Jonathan Smith to be Captain Hammer, the show’s so-called hero.

“Captain Hammer was a lot of fun to play,” Smith said. “He’s really out there and has the best lines.”

Smith is no stranger to music. He is planning to compose a show that brings departments together like this one did.

“It was a great collaborative effort,” Smith said.

Co-musical director Chris McRae had a hand in adapting the show for the stage.

“It was a great opportunity to do this show,” McRae said. “I had to transcribe a few songs for the stage, so that was a lot of fun.”

Adapting the music was a challenge in itself, as all the crew had were the movie versions of songs. McRae added a chorus to some songs as well as parts for the band.

“I really enjoy how everyone made it their own,” Paquette said. “We wanted to make it different from the movie and make it memorable, and I think we did that.”

Students who saw the show agreed it was a night well spent.

“They did a great job, especially for only three weeks of rehearsals,” said senior  Hannah Juza.

Senior Elly Keily agreed. “It was really well put together,” she said. “Each character had its own comedic twist.”

“Doctor Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog” was considered a great success by all involved and could pave the way for more collaborative efforts in the future.


Mary Marvin

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