LAURA LAPHAM — Roxie Rocks Chicago! The jazz killer, a girl led astray by the big city, has become an overnight sensation after the murder of her ex-lover where they both reached for the gun, but she got it first.
This weekend The Dension’s Singer’s Theater performed the show Chicago, a tale of lust, prison, the press, and, of course, murder where the lead, Roxie, finds herself behind bars and trying to gain her freedom, but more importantly trying to gain the hearts and attention of the public.
The performance included many different actors in their 20 person cast. The cast list has Velma Kelly played by Meg Odell ‘19, Roxie Hart played by both Tema Cohen ‘21 and Reilly Harrying ‘19, Matron “Mama” Morton played by Nancy Skaggs, Billy Flynn played by Will Knoop ‘21, Mary Sunshine played by Lanie Rogers ‘22, Amos Hart played by Jack Zwemer ‘21, Ensemble/Prosecutor played by Atticus Bennett ‘22, Ensemble/Reporter played by Maddie Dirrim ‘21, Ensemble/Aaron/Court Clerk played by Sam Fujikawa ‘22, Ensemble/Hunyak played by Madison Gordon ‘21, Ensemble/ Mistress of the Ceremonies played by Lauren Kessler ‘21, Judge/Doctor/Sergeant Fogarty played by Ethan Mcatee ‘20, Ensemble/Fred Casely played by Jackson Mullins ‘21, Ensemble/Mona played by Zoe Pratt ‘22, Ensemble/Reporter played by Rowan Sharkey ‘21, Ensemble/Go-To-Hell-Kitty played by Cat Stark ‘22, Ensemble/Annie played by Mikayla Trimpey ‘20, Ensemble/June played by Bridget Welch ‘22, and lastly Ensemble/Liz played by Jordan Zelvin ‘21.
For some performers, this was one of their first performances with Singer’s Theater after coming to Denison. Mikayla Trimpey ‘22 is a Psychology and Theater double major from Bowling Green Ohio, and she enjoyed being part of the performance.
“I like the amount of dance we got to do, and I enjoy being around all of the people. We work on this twice a week for 2 hours per day. In the end, it comes together so smoothly and it is always so rewarding to have an audience see it,” Trimpey said.
For some this was their last performance with Singer’s Theater, and it was a heartbreaking goodbye. Meg Odell ‘19 is a Theatre Major with Minors in vocal performance and education from Sacramento California “This role was my favorite and getting to play it as my last one at Denison is really special. Also, Getting to work with this cast has been very special, and I really appreciate that. I’m going to miss all that.”
Not every performer in Chicago was a Denison student. Nancy Skaggs was a vocal major at Butler University who currently works at Battelle, and she performed in Chicago with Denison students. “I’m a friend of the director, so when she asked me to be part of the production I was excited because I love the show, and I know Singer’s Theater has amazing shows, and it has been a lovely experience.”
Chicago was a collective wonderful performance and experience for those involved, and served as an introduction for some, but as a goodbye for others.