“Postcards from Paradise,” a full-length musical produced by the College of International Communication, premieres tonight at 7:30 p.m. on the main stage in the Wold Performing Arts Center.
The show, written by Mickey James, Sharon Spivey James and Lynn Professor Emeritus David Fleisher, features music and lyrics with contributions from the late Shel Silverstein. This production of the musical is directed by Harry Murphy, professor in the drama program.
“I am thrilled that our gifted and hardworking Lynn students will be introducing Postcards from Paradise to this area with the American premiere at the Wold Performing Arts Center,” said Fleisher. “I am also fortunate to have the talented and experienced hand of Harry Murphy directing all of the various elements that go into developing Postcards from Paradise for the stage.”
In “Postcards,” the story follows a couple named Nancy and Jess who have decided to venture south to Key West in search of unique therapy meant to address the issues in their marriage. Though the topic seems heavy at first mention, the show is a light-hearted comedy meant to make fun out of a trip to the Keys.
“Postcards from Paradise is a creative and fun story of transformation and growth,” noted Paige Gilson, sophomore and actress in the role of Gator, a bartender at the Paradise Bar in which the story takes place.
Through characters like Iewd Gator, the charismatic waitress, Lisa and the grandiose bar owner, Miguel, the show maintains its comedic value throughout the performance. The trio often makes quick quips and “snarky” asides regarding the therapeutic methods used by Rita, Miguel’s significant other and the psychologist providing the unusual service to Nancy and Jess.
Regardless of the difficulty Rita encounters as a result of the interrupting group of three, the show makes a point of reconciling the issues in a marriage.
“The musical uses comedy to shed light on our inability to let our feelings go and just deal with our problems. Throughout the musical, the audience will see a couple transform as they talk out their problems in song, dance and—of course—through postcards,” added Gilson.
Behind the scenes of the production is a cast of several Lynn students who are no strangers to performing on stage.
“This is possibly one of the best student casts I’ve ever had,” mentioned Murphy about his team of actors. “The amount of collaboration going into the show amazes me—it makes what I do very worthwhile.”
Other students have assisted in the production of the show by creating choreography, arranging music and deciding on visual designs to be used on stage. All of the cast and most of the crew will be traveling to Ireland following the closing night show to spend a week in the country learning about the culture and delivering two additional performances in public Irish venues.
“I’m so pumped about getting to go to Ireland with this cast because it’ll be my first time going to the country,” said Danielle Pascullo, freshman and crew member assisting with choreography. “I’ve heard that they always have a good time when they go so I’m glad to be part of it this time.”
In addition to tonight’s performance, “Postcards” will run tomorrow at 12:30 p.m. and at 7:30 p.m.; the closing show will take place at 7:30 p.m. on Friday. Tickets are free for members of the Lynn community and $10 for general admission, but upon presentation of a postcard-style invitation, viewers can receive $3 off of general admission tickets.
Torsten Rowell, a senior in the role of Jess, is sure that audiences will find “Postcards” at least moderately entertaining.
“The music in the show covers a broad span of genres, the scenes between the songs are pretty funny to watch and the whole show is focused around a trip to paradise, so I’m sure everyone who comes to watch will enjoy it.”
Because the show is an original piece that has never hit the stage before, everyone from the cast and crew to the authors and songwriters are hoping it will entertain audiences both domestically as well as abroad.
“I hope the audience leaves the theater feeling they would like to immediately pack and go to Key West,” continued Fleisher. “The tone of Postcards from Paradise is mostly light-hearted and fun, although there are certainly some serious moments and songs.”