Can a group of former students from Northwest Indiana who now live across the Midwest rehearse for a performance remotely and pull it off? If you were in the audience last weekend at Three Brothers Theatre in Waukegan, the answer is emphatically YES!
Under the auspices of T.E.A., Ltd. (Theatre, Education and the Arts), Beverley Barton Seaver (Director) assembled a group of students from her former teaching days at Merrillville High School (Merrillville, Indiana) and brought them together for two spectacular shows that also served as a fundraiser for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS.
The show featured beloved Broadway show tunes from My Fair Lady, South Pacific as well as songs from contemporary shows like Avenue Q, Next to Normal and Shrek.
The performers included Courtney Ann Miller (vocal director and member of the ensemble), Jacki Boskamp Richardson, Nolan Mihail, Mike Glorioso, Andy Polomchak, Michael Finchum, Ralph Lauren Holt and Tom Dobes (lighting/sound). Among them, they are choir directors, music teachers, a non-profit volunteer manager, an opera house box office manager, and more. Ray Palasz (BC/EFA fundraising coordinator) now a high school theatre teacher, was also a former student teacher of Seaver's while several of the students were in her high school program.
"The singers involved came from as far away as Ohio and West Lafayette, IN. Only one actual rehearsal was held with everyone--the morning of the show," said Beverley Seaver, Director, who served as Merrillville High School's Director of the Theatre program for 12 years. "We wanted to give the students a performance venue to sing their favorite show tunes as well as bring music to the community that would be a mix of well known songs and some new, intriguing shows," Seaver said.
Through ticket sales, raffle and live auction of donated Broadway items, the group was able to raise $500 for the organization. "The other objective was to promote the Three Brothers Theatre, recently opened in downtown Waukegan," added Seaver. The group is planning additional performances in the future.