In Barbara Schramm’s office, the vibrant accent wall, colorfully draped curtains, and beaded lamps identify her creativity and one-of-a-kind ways. The piano, which consumes the space, and her everlasting grin tell her passion for what she does.
Schramm, a music professor at Concordia, is about to share it with the Concordia community through organizing a music department first.
On Monday, Schramm’s 17 voice lesson students will perform in what she calls, “An Evening of Musical Theatre.”
Many of the students were active in music in high school, Schramm said. Most are not music majors, and few have time to participate in formal Concordia ensembles. Schramm organized this because it gives them the opportunity to do it for fun with a minimal time commitment—the students have been rehearsing only two hours a week.
Schramm, who has been heavily involved in musical theatre since the age of six, said this gives her students a chance to do something more than just getting up on stage and singing for a recital.
Concordia junior Emilie Bowman, a healthcare management and Scandinavian studies double major, represents the diversity of the students in the show.
“There are a lot of students with a keen gift for theatricality that don’t get showcased,” Bowman said. Doing this as a recital allows for those students to show off their talents, she said.
The theme of the program is based off of two popular musicals: “Guys and Dolls” and “The Pirates of Penzance.” Students will take turns on solos throughout the production as Schramm has given them songs that will show them off in their best light.
Bowman is featured as the soloist as Ruth in “When Frederic Was a Little Lad.” In addition to her solo, she also will act out scenes and join in on some chorus numbers throughout the production.
Nathan Lindgren, a freshman at Concordia and vocal music education major, said that it has been fun working with more experienced students. Although it is not a formal production, he has been able to learn a lot from them.
Lindgren was involved in musicals growing up, but has not been in one since his junior year of high school. However, he laughed as he said this production is much more like the “Sunday school Christmas productions.” Lindgren said students should go into the performance with an open mind.
“It is something completely new,” he said. “It’s like a big rock band who has a lot of great songs and someone takes a bunch…and puts them together.”
Bowman also said the audience should look for the students’ joy and excitement as they perform.
“It will be a hoot,” she said.