PAC’s Revenge of the Space Pandas soaring our way

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Performing Arts Company (PAC) cast for the 2016 fall show, Game of Tiaras. Photo credit goes to Jonathan Kind.

Travel through time and space with the Performing Arts Company (PAC) and come watch their newly selected their winter show. This production will be for the Company’s competition season that starts December 28 and lasts through February.

“Auditions for the competition show were right before Thanksgiving,” said PAC Director Jonathan Kind. “PAC had only a week between the end of the Game of Tiaras and auditions for Revenge of the Space Pandas.”[pullquote]

This show is different from the others we have done here in a lot of ways. The content is much more silly. Game of Tiaras was funny, but in a very different fashion.

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The main storyline of Revenge of the Space Pandas revolves around a young scientist, Binky Rudich, and his companions who create a device that allows them to travel through time and space. When they come out on the other end, they find themselves on a planet 50 light years from Earth with a device that has broken.

While trying to find their way back home the group encounters famous actors, a tyrannical ruler, and of course, space pandas.

“The idea came directly from Mr. Kind. He showed a few of the PAC kids some of the script, and it was pretty much decided then,” said junior and Assistant Director Dallas Fuller.

This competition show has more restrictions compared to the fall show, each year the Michigan Interscholastic Forensics Association (MIFA) cycles between drama and comedy, so the schools must adhere to that. The play must also be able to be performed in under 45 minutes. So, Kind said he selected Revenge of the Space Pandas by David Mamet because he was sure it would wow audiences and judges.

“When I first came across Revenge of the Space Pandas by David Mamet, I was intrigued by the title and upon reading it, I fell in love with the quirky comedy and twists and turns of the plot,” Kind said. “The potential for awesome costumes and an interesting, yet simple set struck me as something perfect for competition.”

Junior Tova Carter is taking the helm as Stage Manager for a second time, as well as, other seasoned Crew Heads. Dallas Fuller is the assistant director working alongside Kind. Juniors Parker Feraco, Kelly Newell and Samantha Putman are Sound Chief, Lighting Chief and Props Chief respectively.[pullquote]

Cast List for Revenge of the Space Pandas

[pullquote]Humans:
Binky- Sam Tilbury
Vivian- Athena Osburn
Bob- Alex Prater
Mrs. Rudich- Mackenzie Sternburgh

Pandas:
George- Ruth Hill
Retainer- Hannah Monroe
Edward Parpis- Trenton Hargrove
Executioner- Rein Boehme
Newsperson- Sylvia Nuyen
Panda 1- Chloe Leitch
Panda 2-Lizzy Hargrove
Panda 3- Storm Armstrong
Panda 4- Erin Hope
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“Casting was very difficult because we had a lot of great actors audition, but only a small number of parts,” Kind said. “If everyone puts in the work, I know they are capable of I am optimistic for our season.”

Coming into the second year of competition, the PAC company better understands the process and enables the company to explore new elements to improve their production.  

Kind said that the set was going to be the most considerable difference with production this year. The cast and crew will be interacting with the set.

“Last year the set was a simple interior set with aspects of minimalism. The set for this production is much more interactionary and adaptive,” Kind said. “The same set pieces serve multiple purposes to create the illusion of many more scenes.”

Sophomore Athena Osburn–who was casted as one of the leads, Vivian, said that preparation for the show has been running smoothly and that they are heading in a really good direction to make the performance the best it can be.

“I think the show will be good because it’s filled with great, funny characters and little actions and dialogue that make this show enjoyable,” Osburn said. “Also the set is gonna really super cool.”

She also said that the cast gets along well, and she enjoys being surrounded by these funny people for most of her day.

“Since this is our second year of competition, I am very excited to see what PAC can do now that we better understand the process,” Kind said.

PAC’s Revenge of the Space Pandas soaring our way

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