The Insomnia Theater puts on its first cabaret performance, showcasing students’ many varying talents.
The Underground, located inside the Student Center, became a nightclub for Insomnia Theater’s first cabaret performance on March 23.
Co-founder and vice president of Insomnia Theater, Niki Ianni, a junior public relations major, said since the club was created, she wanted to put on a cabaret performance.
“I really love the idea of letting people be able to express their individual talents,” Ianni said.
Insomnia Theater is a student-run and -produced theater organization that allows students of any major to bring out their creative energy without having a huge time commitment.
“We feel like we have a well-rounded group that’s talented,” Insomnia Theater Finance Director Anthony Taylor, a senior film major, said. “We wanted to be able to give them the experience and show people.”
Taylor and Ianni, the producers of the cabaret and longtime friends, held open auditions during the first week in March for anyone interested. Ianni said each performer was to prepare a three- to five-minute piece, and that they were looking at this as an “opportunity to scout out new talent for future members.”
“We got 10 auditions, and we loved all of them, so we decided it was a perfect set amount for the show,” Ianni said.
Everyone auditioned with what they performed at the cabaret, so only one rehearsal was held about a week before the show took place. By chance, everyone performed an act that had to do with love, which ultimately established the theme of the cabaret.
The cabaret participants performed a variety of different acts, including singing, dancing, monologues and poetry readings.
Freshman theater major Courtney Clark, a new participant in Insomnia Theater’s organization, performed “His Name” from “Piece the Musical” to the piano accompaniment of freshman pharmacy major Justin Reinert.
“Justin and I had a great time working and performing on our piece,” Clark said, who has had a lot of experience with doing musicals and plays in the past.
“The students who ran the event gave me lots of good ideas and criticism for my piece, and were great people to work with,” Clark added.
Taylor said Clark “did the best job of getting a song stuck in my head.”
Clark, who said she loves having any excuse to perform, hopes to work with Insomnia Theater again in the future.
Freshman music education major Hilary Klapholz attended the cabaret with a group of friends to support her fellow cast members.
“I thought it was good,” Klapholz said. “But the love theme was a little cliché. Although, it’s nice that with the theme of love, you can branch out and do so many different things.”
The end of the show featured sophomore theater major Kate Lagana, who used sign language to express the lyrics of “Seasons of Love” from the rock opera “RENT,” which was sung by the entire cabaret cast.
“I really like how they incorporated, at the end, the hand signals,” Klapholz said.
More than half of the tables in the underground were filled on Wednesday evening, with students interested in seeing what the Insomnia Theater performers had to offer.
“Unfortunately, we didn’t get to advertise as much as we would have liked to,” Ianni said. “But I’m very happy with the amount of people that we did receive.”
“The great thing about doing these shows is that everybody has so many friends that want to support them,” Taylor said. “We always get a good turn out.”
There is even more to come from Insomnia Theater before the end of the semester. Expect another 24-hour Insomnia show on April 9. Vince McNeil, the community outreach coordinator of Insomnia Theater, has organized a Community Service Benefit Concert to take place on April 15, as well.
Lauren Hertzler can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.