Setting Sail on the SS American

By: Sarah Michels, Co-Editor in Chief, Rosecall

From Friday, November 3rd to Sunday, November 12th, twenty-two Assumption seniors set sail on the SS American in Rose Theater’s fall musical, Anything Goes. The ship was home to debutantes, criminals, and stock brokers alike; the mixture of strong personalities filled the deck with singing, dancing, and laughing. Just as Hope Harcourt laments her struggle about who to marry, the seniors of Rose Theater Company (RTC) lament their final fall musical. Standout senior performances included Sydney Meyer as Reno Sweeney, a fun-loving nightclub singer and evangelist, and Miranda McCarty as Hope Harcourt, an engaged debutante who finds her path to love. Other senior actresses included Julianne Gnadinger as a reformed gangster, Julia Keegan and Callie Demasters as Angels, Kara Bruns as the ship’s purser, and Katie Monteith, Bridget Coleman, and Mary Hummel as ship passengers.

Sydney Meyer said she feels lucky to have been able to play a role like Reno Sweeney. Her favorite part of the role was that, “Reno gets to do everything. She gets to be goofy, she gets to be sexy, she gets to be fun, she gets to be in love. But she’s not controlled by men and in the time period of this play these roles just didn’t exist for girls.” Kara Bruns, who played the ship’s purser, who made sure everything on the SS American went smoothly, enjoyed her first Rose Theater experience on the actual stage. In past years, she has been part of props crew, lights crew, and stage management, but this year, she decided to try something new. Bruns hopes that the class of 2018 leaves a legacy of being “one big family” and says her favorite part of her role was that she “got to hold a dog a lot.” Another budding actress who sailed aboard the SS American was Julianne Gnadinger, also taking on a character role for the first time in her RTC career. She played Luke in Gnadinger’s words, “a complete disaster”, who suffers from a gambling addiction. Gnadinger exemplifies the impact that Rose Theater can have on its members. She said, “[RTC] changed my life. I’m more outgoing and not afraid to take risks anymore.” She hopes that the class of 2018 has taught future generations of RTC that the company is a place of “inclusion”.

However, behind the characters on stage were dozens of hardworking individuals who sacrificed hours upon hours of their time to contribute to this fall’s production of Anything Goes. Our seniors were an integral part of the crews they worked with, including lights crew (Kelsey Bailey; Sophia Gadansky), sets crew (Emma Putman; Abby Floden; Mackenzie Tapp), sound crew (Correna Tate), hair/makeup crew (Annika Geiser; Julia Pemberton), costumes crew (Elizabeth Stein; Rosemary Scarpaci; Kiah Pike), and stage management (Amy Olshansky; Katie Marx). These girls’ efforts certainly paid off; the SS American, as well as everyone on board, looked shipshape, and the production went off without a hitch. Amy Olshansky said that being stage manager has probably been her favorite role over the past four years. She has previously been head of makeup crew, but as stage manager, along with Katie Marx and Ellie Crawford, she has a lot more control, and is a part of every aspect of the production. RTC has impacted Olshansky by teaching her to have “more responsibility for [herself] and the work [she] has to do.”

The class of 2018 takes up a considerable percentage of the current Rose Theater Company, and they will leave a legacy for future generations of actors, actresses, and crew members. Sydney Meyer said that the seniors want to leave a “legacy of love. Love for theater and love for each other. ” Mr. Sumey, the theater director, is sure that the class of 2018 will be remembered long after they leave the halls of Assumption, saying “Because of the efforts of the class of 2018, our current underclasswomen and men will be thoughtful, mission-driven leaders of RTC.”

Sydney Meyer (Reno Sweeney) and Sam Hall (Billy Crocker) in the fall musical, Anything Goes

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