The School of Music at The University of Southern Mississippi will present Showbiz Showstoppers, a one-night-only spectacular featuring numbers from some of Broadway’s best musicals at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, April 11 at the Lake Terrace Convention Center in Hattiesburg.
These musicals include everything from Camelot to The Book of Mormon. As one might expect, the cast is filled with talented students; however, several outstanding alums auditioned and are also featured in the cast and on the creative team.
The audition process for Showbiz Showstoppers included open auditions to the community. Several talented alums were selected for the cast and one was approached to be part of the creative team.
Southern Miss alumnus Joseph Powell (2012) is featured in the show. Powell noted that after the Sweeney Todd production last year, in which he performed the role of The Beadle, he wanted to work with the School of Music again.
“The Showbiz experience has been one of hard work, but with immediate payout.” Powell said. “The gratification of singing and acting with a super-talented cast and crew is spoiling me as a musician and actor. I know that I won't always get to work with such high caliber of people.”
Cherie Bowe (1980 alumna) has always been a Golden Eagle at heart. Upon her return to Mississippi after sixteen years, Bowe auditioned and was made a part of this year’s Showbiz Showstoppers cast.
Bowe encouraged her fellow musical lovers and alums, “This show has it all. If you like Broadway, you'll want to see it. If you like to hear wonderful vocalists, you'll want to be there. If you like to tap your toes, hum along, and hear some of the best music ever written, don’t miss it.”
Jennifer Hart (2010 alumna) auditioned for Showbiz because of her love for Broadway music and musical theater.
Hart describes her experience with the Showbiz cast by saying, “I've been so proud of how all the cast members come to each rehearsal looking to improve from the time before. One of the unique aspects of this show is that it's like a series of snapshots from great Broadway musicals. I have directed or performed in many of these shows and we're bringing the audience the best parts - the jewels.”
Alumna Tammy Mansfield along with the show’s director alumni Mike Lopinto (2004 alumnus) and music director, Michael Miles, director of the School of Music, crafted the shows vocal and instrumental arrangements. Mansfield was drawn to the project by the chance to work on a large variety of songs from multiple musicals all in one show. She loved the creative freedom, cooperation, and the great opportunity to expose students to a wide variety of musical theater history.
Mansfield suggests everyone comes to Showbiz for the “great songs, great talent, and great show.”
The show is nearing a sellout. Tickets are $20 general admission at the Southern Miss Ticket Office, 601.266.5418 or southernmisstickets.com.