Feb. 23-25, 7:30 p.m., Feb. 26 2:00pm, 7:30 p.m.
Adams Pool Theatre
Directed by Allen J. Macleod ’14
Produced by Sara Kantor ’14
Composer Jonathan Larson is best known for his musical “RENT,” and relatively few know of his autobiographical work “tick, tick… Boom!” The show is coming to the Adams Pool Theatre in a new HRDC production starting Feb. 23. “This play was originally a monologue that Larson himself would perform,” says director Allen J. Macleod ’14. “He would sit down at his piano at a club and speak all of the lines.”
The play deals with Jon’s struggle to find stability in his life as well as success in the musical theatre business on the eve of his 30th birthday. Even college students can relate to that scary prospect, says Macleod. “I know I am a sophomore and graduation is already terrifying.”
The theme of transitioning from one stage of life to another adds emotional potency to the musical. “These are those formative years when students are figuring out which direction they are going to take in their lives. Although this character is 10 years older than some of the people who are going to be watching, the emotions portrayed are relatable” adds Adam J. Conner ’14, a Crimson advertising manager who plays Jon.
The show revolves around three main characters: Jon, his girlfriend Susan (Kim A. Onah ’15), and his best friend Michael (Karl C. Kopczynski ’15). All three actors are excited by the advantages a small cast provides. “You can become more intimate with each other, which leads to better acting,” says Onah. The small cast allows the actors to better understand each other and leads to more compelling performances all around.
The music this dynamic trio will be singing is eclectic. “It is definitely a rock musical as a whole, but it has many different styles.” says Vocal Music Director Ethan T. Addicott ’14. From 1950s rock à la “Grease,” to country, metal, and power ballads, the show has something for everyone. During the last number, says Addicott, “The entire band cuts out. It is just the actors singing by themselves, and you can just feel a crowd of thousands clapping to the beat. It has that power.”
With both powerful singing and an intimate cast, “tick, tick...Boom!” promises to rock the Adams pool while still taking on some of the most common anxieties faced by Harvard students.