It’s time to trade in the classic Temple clothing, cheesesteaks, and outrageous sports fans of North Philly for the revolutionary streets of 1960s Baltimore with Temple University’s production of Hairspray.
Hairspray tells the incredible story of Tracy Turnblad, as she rises to fame in Baltimore, Maryland on the “Corny Collins Show” and her pursuit for social justice. Tracy utilizes her fame to integrate the variety show. The famous musical resonates with past and present audiences due to its themes of inclusion, equality and racism. While the musical will have viewers dancing in their seats with the classics, “Nicest Kids in Town” and “Without Love,” it will also encourage audience members to reflect on its relevant messages. Sets are painted in bright oranges, pinks and greens, while costumes stay true to the 1960s fashion one may see in movie versions of the play. Group numbers show off the vast array of talent in the cast, with perfectly synced dance numbers and strong vocal performances.
Peter Reynolds, the director of the musical, stated “it takes a village to make a musical” at Temple Theatre department’s practicum on October 14th. A main focus of the meeting was discussing “why now.” Why perform a musical set in the 60s in modern days? Reynolds enforced the relevance of the topics of racism and exclusion and how these stories must continue to be told until change is made.
The actors and crew members have spent four and a half weeks rehearsing Hairspray, and the practice certainly paid off.
Hairspray has had a successful week so far, selling out its night performance on the 15th.
Audience members are raving with reviews!
Travoye Joyner, an acting major at Temple University, exclaimed, “the show was incredible! I love that Temple Theatre did this show because its themes connect to things happening in society right now! The plus-size shame, African American oppression and more.”
Temple’s production will be housed in Tomlinson Theater from October 12th-23rd and will feature the University’s talented array of students. Tickets are $10 with a TUId and can be purchased in person or online through the School of Theater, Film, and Media Arts website.