For students in need of a little “drama” in their lives this fall semester, QuantUM Entertainment has got you covered.
Unlike productions at the Jerry Herman Ring Theatre, QuantUM is completely student run and open to all majors.
“Everything we do is directed by students,” said Alex Gonzalez, chair of QuantUM. “In the Ring Theatre, the faculty is more hands on. They have a say and ultimately approve a production.”
Apart from acting, QuantUM offers students other positions such as stage manager, set designer, light designer, costume designer and props manager.
“There is something for everyone,” Gonzalez said. “All you really need is a passion for theater.”
The University of Miami student-run theater group will be showcasing three major productions this season: “Reefer Madness,” a musical comedy; “Gum,” a drama based on real-life events; and “The Rocky Horror Picture Show,” a shadow casting involving audience participation.
Based on the 1930s propaganda film to scare people away from smoking marijuana, “Reefer Madness” is a musical that comically exemplifies the effects of the drug. Gonzalez is directing “Reefer Madness” and thinks that the school has never seen anything like it.
“It takes the audience on a very colorful trip through the hallucinogenic effects of marijuana,” Gonzalez said.
Set in a country where women’s rights are restricted, “Gum” illustrates how chewing gum, which was rumored to be an aphrodisiac, creates an outrage that leads to violent consequences. Nicknamed the “Juicy Fruit tragedy,” “Gum” relives the lives of two sisters by telling the story of the older sister, who causes a scandal by exploring her sexuality and consequently undergoes a brutal punishment.
Sarah Zemach, director of QuantUM’s production of “Gum,” feels the play is dramatically graphic and powerful.
“It will definitely have people talking long after the closing act,” she said.
In conjunction with the Cinematic Arts Commission (CAC), QuantUM will also be shadow casting “The Rocky Horror Picture Show.”
Shadow casting is when a group of people mouth words of a movie while the actual movie is playing on a screen in the background- In essence, it is the act of pantomiming.
Auditions for “Reefer Madness” and “Gum” took place in early September. There is still time, however, to participate in “The Rocky Horror Picture Show.” Auditions will take place Oct. 2 at noon on the second floor of the UC.
Although not officially included in QuantUM’s season, Gonzalez said that he is trying to organize a flash mob to perform random dances throughout the UC.
“I’m trying to gather a group of people together to choreograph a dance and randomly start dancing around the UC,” Gonzalez said.
QuantUM show selection, which takes place at the end of each semester, is based on student input.
“Students give suggestions of shows they would like to produce, and we choose the ones students feel most passionate about,” Gonzalez said.
Sophomore Vale Southard, a music education major, performed in last fall’s production of “Pippin” and said that QuantUM gave her the opportunity to participate in theater, one of her main hobbies throughout high school.
“I was able to get involved with drama through QuantUM,” Southard said. “It felt good to be on stage again and perform in front of an audience. It was a great experience.”
Laurie Charles may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“Reefer Madness”: Nov. 11, 14, 18, 20-21 at 8 p.m. at the Hillel Jewish Center
“The Rocky Horror Picture Show”: Oct. 28-29 at midnight at the Cosford Cinema
“Gum” tentatively playing Dec. 3-5; time and location TBA
Admission for all productions: free for Cane Card holders, $10 for non-Cane Card holders
SPECIAL NOTE: Auditions for “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” are to be held Oct. 2 at 12 p.m. in the second floor of the UC