Free Performances of “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee,” June 1 & 2
Open to the public; seats are first come, first served at the Margo Jones Theatre on the SMU campus
Music and theatre students at SMU Meadows School of the Arts will present the musical The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee at the school’s Margo Jones Theatre on June 1 & 2 at 2:30 p.m. Admission to the one-act, 90-minute comedy is free and open to the public.
The musical, which won two Tony Awards in 2005, is about a fictional middle school spelling bee in which a group of eclectic sixth graders and their teachers reveal personal, funny and touching aspects of their lives. The show is recommended for ages 13 and up.
The Meadows production is comprised of 10 students from Meadows’ May Term “American Musical Theatre” course. The course cultivates dance, acting and vocal skills, including belting, for the musical stage.
Veteran stage director, movement specialist and Associate Professor of Theatre Sara Romersberger directs the show. Professor of Voice Virginia Dupuy serves as producer. “This is an exciting opportunity for our students,” says Dupuy. “We have ten rehearsal days from the first singing rehearsal until an audience sees the show, so we stress smart preparation in an immersive rehearsal experience.”
Assisting Dupuy in production is Lane Harder, lecturer of music composition and theory and director of SYZYGY, the contemporary music ensemble at Meadows. (Coincidentally, in an early scene in the musical, a character reminisces about when she once won a spelling bee by spelling the word “syzygy” correctly.) “The class addresses needs that our students have in terms of finding artistic success as well as employment as working musicians upon graduation,” says Harder. “Our students work very hard and bring such a focus to their work. It’s gratifying to see their very rapid progress.”
Music director for the show is Chris Widomski (M.M. Performance/Organ ’11, M.M. Conducting/Instrumental ’18), lecturer in music at The University of Texas at Dallas.
Seating is first come, first served. The Margo Jones Theatre is located in the Owen Arts Center, 6101 Bishop Blvd. on the SMU campus.
Click here for parking information.