• 2013-2014 Season,  Light in the Piazza

    The Light in the Piazza – From Tech Week to Performance

    by Kristen Leinbach, Dramaturg As the months have passed, it is hard to believe that “We’re finally here!”  The show is well underway and we are thoroughly enjoying bringing the 1950’s Italy to BYU.  After beginning back in March with auditions, having production meetings throughout the summer, holding rehearsals starting in August, The Light in the Piazza opened on November 15th and will run through December 7th. In order for us to bring The Light in the Piazza to life here on the Pardoe theatre, a lot of work has been done back stage.  The week before the opening of the show we held Tech week in order to add the…

  • 2013-2014 Season,  Light in the Piazza

    Meet the Cast – Cameron Smith as Roy Johnson

    By Kristen Leinbach, Dramaturg When Margaret and Clara leave for their vacation in Italy, Roy Johnson – Margaret’s husband and Clara’s father – stays home in Winston Salem, NC for work.  Margaret frequently calls Roy to update them about their adventures in Italy. It is through Roy and Margaret’s relationships that we are introduced to another difficulty in Margaret’s life that she must overcome and as a result learn and grow. Cameron Smith, who portrays Roy Johnson shared the following… “I’m from Sandy, UT and am a Junior in the Music Dance Theater program at BYU, I’ll graduate next year and begin a professional career in acting. I served a mission in…

  • 2013-2014 Season,  Light in the Piazza

    Meet the Cast – Alicia Shumway as Franca Naccarelli

    By Kristen Leinbach, Dramaturg As we continue to explore relationships and the various types of relationships we form in this life, The Light in the Piazza provides many opportunities to see not only the positive but the trials that can come from love.  France and Gusieppe Naccarelli feel in love only to watch that love dwindle and fade due to selfish choices.  Alicia Shumway, who portrays Franca, shared the following about her experiences with Piazza… “I am a music dance theatre major with an editing minor.  I am from Tokyo, Japan and I will be graduating soon.  I essentially do nothing aside from school! I died happy when we knew that BYU…

  • 2013-2014 Season,  Light in the Piazza

    Meet the Cast – Chase Elwood & Amanda Van Orden

    by Kristen Leinbach, Dramaturg Throughout the show, The Light in the Piazza, the world of the play is really brought together by members of the ensemble who bring light and life to the piazza’s of Italy. I would like to introduce you to two members of the chorus. Chase Elwood shared the following… “I have been studying Music Dance Theater and Psychology at BYU.  I love connecting with people.  I have really enjoyed creating a story for background characters in Light in the Piazza.  For me personally, this show has emphasized the importance of being true to myself and grounded in my body, and being able to love and be loved.  It…

  • 2013-2014 Season,  Light in the Piazza

    Meet the Cast – Ted Bushman as Signor Naccarelli

    by Kristen Leinbach, Dramaturg One of the most important relationships in this life is that between a family.  In The Light in the Piazza we have the opportunity to experience the love and relationships found between many different types of families.  Signor Naccarelli is the head of the Naccarelli’s household and Fabrizio father.  In BYU’s production of Piazza Teb Bushman is portraying Signor Naccarelli and he shared the following, “My name is Ted Bushman.  I am a Senior MDT major from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and by night I am a playwright and composer too.  My favorite stuff I’ve done while at BYU includes putting on my first play, Fontanelle, which Scott Eckern directed, and…

  • 2013-2014 Season,  Light in the Piazza

    Meet the Cast – Michael Milkanin as Fabrizio Naccarelli

    by Kristen Leinbach, Dramaturg In The Light in the Piazza, not only are the beauties of triumphs and struggles shared with us between a mother and daughter but we also are able to join Clara on a journey to find and experience the love found between what can only be called true love.  As Clara and Margaret vacation in Florence, Clara meets a young Italian named Fabrizio.  They fall in love and begin to build a relationship that will not only present challenges but also new found discoveries and joys.  Michael Milkanin who portrays Fabrizio in BYU’s production of The Light in the Piazza stated the following… “Hi! I’m Michael Milkanin, from…

  • 2013-2014 Season,  Light in the Piazza

    Meet the Cast – Becca Petersen as Clara Johnson

    By Kristen Leinbach, Dramaturg When asked about writing The Light in the Piazza and about the relationships of the characters, Craig Lucas said the following  “Clara apprehends the world differently than her mother. [Margaret] goes through Italy with a guidebook. But the girl sees experiences, she sees the light in the piazza. She literally experiences the light as representative of her deepest feelings…That’s why the score has moments where words no longer suffice or are no longer important. It’s the feeling and light. Those things carry us. Human beings are just a conduit for love. I think Clara sees that. Love comes before her and after her.” I asked Becca Petersen, portraying…

  • 2013-2014 Season,  Light in the Piazza

    Meet the Cast – Kimberly Bunker as Margaret Johnson

    by Kristen Leinbach, Dramaturg Elizabeth Spencer, author of the novella The Light in the Piazza stated, “I believe no one can read The Light in the Piazza without seeing how remarkably Southern Margaret Johnson is. She appears to be feminine and gracious, certainly well mannered, a little vulnerable, a little innocent, a loyal wife and devoted mother… It is worth considering Margaret Johnson in many ways–isn’t she basically a very practical woman? It is practicality versus love that comes into conflict. Her heart goes to battle with her mind… Readers and audience members will certainly have their own opinions as to the rightness or wrongness of Margaret Johnson’s decision. This mystery is…

  • 2013-2014 Season,  Light in the Piazza

    Welcome Backstage – Piazza Costumes

    By Kristen Leinbach, Dramaturg The process in bringing The Light in the Piazza to life continues to be an incredible journey.  In order to recreate the idea of  the 1950’s a lot of time has been and continues to be spent on the design elements of the show.  Our costumes are a crucial part of not only helping the actor’s to feel like they are in a different decade but also establish a consistent world or our production. The costume designer, Ashley Cook stated the following…. “The design process thus far for The Light in the Piazza has been a great experience. This is such a beautiful story, and the music is…

  • 2013-2014 Season,  Light in the Piazza

    Welcome Backstage – Piazza Makeup

    by Kristen Leinbach, Dramaturg As our rehearsals and production process get well underway, we are ecstatic to begin seeing all of our ideas come together.  At each production meeting for the show we spend time discussing design and production ideas such as costumes, the set, the lighting, the sound, the makeup and the props.  Our main focus is on finding a way to bring 1953 Florence, Italy to life on our stage and for ourl audience. For this blog post I would like to welcome you back stage to our production meetings and introduce you to concept ideas from our makeup designers.  The makeup designers for The Light in the…