The Muskegon Community College (MCC) Center for Theater presents Rent,
an iconic rock-musical, February 23-26, 2023, in the Overbrook Theater. The story centers around a group of New York artists living in the East Village in the 1990s amid the HIV/AIDS crisis. The message of Rent reverberates through the lyrics: live life to the fullest, because there is “no day but today!”
“The MCC Center for Theater selected Rent for our 2022-2023 season theme of wellness because of its examination of community wellness. For a musical that was created 30 years ago, many of the themes are still relevant today,” explained the play’s director, Les Rorick. “From a national health crisis to substance abuse, poverty, and marginalization, Rent highlights a handful of social ills of the ’80s and ’90s—far too many of which we still see in 2022. We wanted to leverage Rent’s powerful message to share our conviction that community wellness is just as important as individual wellness,” added Rorick.
The musical was first seen in a workshop production at New York Theatre Workshop in 1993 and debuted at Broadway’s Nederlander Theatre on April 29, 1996. The original music and lyrics were created by Jonathan Larson, who took inspiration from Puccini’s 1896 Italian opera, La Bohème. On Broadway, Rent gained critical acclaim and won several awards, including the Pulitzer Prize for Drama and the Tony Award for Best Musical, and was one of the longest-running shows on Broadway.
Because Rent depicts explicit language, sexual content, and substance abuse, the suggested audience is 17-years-of-age and older and parental guidance highly suggested.
Show times are 7:30 p.m. Thursday-Saturday, February 23-25, and at 3 p.m. on Sunday, February 26, 2023. All performances are at Overbrook Theater, located in the Frauenthal Art Center on the main campus of Muskegon Community College (MCC), 221 S. Quarterline Road, Muskegon. Tickets, which are $15 and $10 for MCC students and staff, are available by phone, at (231) 777-0324, and online at www.muskegoncc.edu/arts-and-humanities/overbrook-theater.
The Rent cast includes Alison Mastee, Madison Cass, Cassidy Caswell, Calvin O’Leary, Dani Durst, Jordan Vander Ven, Julia Uganski, and Tom Bitson as ensemble members; Truce Glore as Angel; Christian “Fletch” Fletcher as Benny; Tyler Ross as Collins; Rikki Ridout as Joanne; Mark Martin as Mark; Ashley Erdman as Maureen; Cece Davis as Mimi; and Noah Zimmer as Roger.
The Rent production team includes Director Les Rorick; Assistant Director Spencer Klairter; Vocal Director Rory Closz; Choreographer Jacqui Robinson; Intimacy Director Kristina McCloskey; Stage Manager Ashton Bahr; Costumer Susan Eyler; Set, Lighting Designer, Technical Director Andrew Patten; Conductor Keith Walker; and Producer Sheila Wahamaki.
The Center for Theater, a component of MCC’s Arts and Humanities Department, provides theater classes and a diverse schedule of theater and dance performances and touring productions. Muskegon Community College offers over 80 areas of student and variety of community resources including free planetarium shows, a natural area, science museum, health and wellness center, and more. Visit www.muskegoncc.edu to learn more.
# # #