Several factors lead to cancellation of ‘Rags’

Several+factors+lead+to+cancellation+of+%27Rags%27+

Vina Cristobal

"Rags," the spring musical, has officially been cancelled.

A week after rehearsal began, Bro. Gary Morris officially cancelled “Rags,” the spring musical that was scheduled for April 4-6 in the Loo Theatre.

Upon receiving the schedule for the play, the seven leads and half of the ensemble cast had dropped out of the play due to prior engagements. More than 20 students, who received the email on Wednesday, March 5, were cast for the spring musical.

“The main reason was that not a lot of people tried out that could fulfill some of the lead male roles here at Chaminade,” said Rachael Paeste, stage manager for the spring musical. “Like, there’s a lot of candidates that did try out and did get parts. However, one of the dates conflicted with Extravaganza. These guys were a main part of Extravaganza, and they couldn’t make it so they kinda had to drop out of ‘Rags’.”

Morris, who could not be reached for comment, stated that the play would no longer continue and he thanked all the participants for showing up to rehearsals and for contributing their time to work on the play.

Vannessa “T.O.” Turner-Oliver, who was part of the ensemble for “Rags,” was disappointed that the play did not continue.

“I was sad, to be honest,” said Turner-Oliver, a Communications major. “I was on my way to rehearsal when I just happened to look at my e-mail and it said, ‘Sorry, the play’s been cancelled.’ I felt was a bummer because we put in a week’s worth of work and it was coming along, but there just wasn’t enough leads to carry the play.”

“The main reason was that not a lot of people tried out that could fulfill some of the lead male roles here at Chaminade,” said Rachael Paeste, stage manager for the spring musical. “Like, there’s a lot of candidates that did try out and did get parts; however, one of the dates conflicted with Extravaganza. These guys were a main part of Extravaganza, and they couldn’t make it so they kinda had to drop out of “Rags.”

When “Rags” announced its scheduled release date, OSAL had already planned the date for the annual Extravaganza festival.

“It’s much more of a conflict this semester because last semester was a smaller play, with a smaller cast,” Paeste said. “This semester it’s a very large play, and we needed as many people as we could get. But the people that we would love to have helped us out with all had prior engagements before that. We actually had the dates before Extravaganza. Brother Gary already had that date set for April 4, but it just so happened that Extravaganza was scheduled for that day too.”

But Extravaganza was not the only factor that kept the musical from debuting at Chaminade.

Paeste added that Tim Carney, a music professor at Chaminade University, would not be available to help students with singing practices, which would have been held during the last two weeks before the play. In addition, the important materials needed for the play, such as sheet music, scripts and licensing, were unable to be delivered on time due to a snow storm that occurred in New York, where Chaminade ordered the materials from.

Students like Turner-Oliver said that other factors could have taken into consideration to prevent the cancellation of “Rags.”

“I just think that because we are a small drama department, we shouldn’t have plays that are going to incorporate a large audience because people don’t participate,” Turner-Oliver said. “So [Morris] should already know that if he’s gonna pick a play for the spring or the fall, it has to match up what type of talent you have already. Don’t pick a play that’s gonna call for 80 people and only 8 people show up. “

According to Paeste, “Rags” will be postponed until next spring, so that the members of the Performing Arts department have more time to prepare, in case other factors conflict with the musical.

“At the time, I just thought, ‘OK, well, we have another year to prepare,’ so things would be smoother to transition,” Paeste said.

In the meantime, the students of the performing arts department are in the works of another smaller production.

“Right now, the stagecraft class is creating their own play,” Paeste said. “It’s based on our experiences at the Kennedy Theatre and we’re actually just trying to figure something out. We’re still creating something, but it’s still in the works. If something actually grows into an actual theater production, we will open it up to students. It’s just that we’re still in the works of creating something new.”