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The whole acting cast, as well as the director for the New Repertory Theater’s new production, Marry Me A Little all stopped by our WERS studios today to give our audience a taste of what kind of music exactly to expect if one were to go see their production. One could easily tell just how close this group was, as they were all laughs and smiles from the moment they walked into the studio. I was able to sit down with the director of the production herself, Ilyse Robbins, and get a few questions answered about her experience with the cast and crew.
“I’ve been working with most of these actors and actresses for a few years now, both on the stage with them, and behind the scenes as a director. We’ve all become somewhat of a family during those few years with each other, and all we want to do is see our other family members nail that solo or deliver those lines spot on. We’ve all come to love each other,” Robbins said.
As they jumped into their first song for our Standing Room Only channel, they continued to look and laugh with one another, not letting the live performance get any of them down or nervous. The four actors, two of them being girls and two of them being guys, started their performance with a song that shares its title with the production, “Marry Me A Little.” Right out of the gate, each actor was given his or her own solo in a verse, and was able to show the audience just how skilled he or she was vocally. A busy piano piece played in the background as each actor sang of his or her own wish for finding true love, each proclaiming, “I’m ready!” in their respective verses, and then coming together for a harmonic chorus.
Whereas singing something like this night-in and night-out may seem to lose its charm to the untrained eye, Ilyse described to me what keeps each act fresh and exciting each night.
“It is all about finding something new and bringing it to the table each night during our shows that keeps these actors and actresses performing each night. They are able to take from their characters and maybe develop something that they didn’t completely think of the night before, while maintaining the same story that the script gives. They provide a new twist for their characters, and it keeps all of us on our toes each night, evolving and adapting together,” Robbins said.
Their next song, “Rainbows” tells a beautiful tale of a male and female couple who are struggling with their stance on whether or not to have a child. The song began with a bit of a spoken word piece, and then jumped into a solo for the actor, and then the actress, and then together they sang a duet in the chorus. Slow piano background accompaniment set the tone for a somber perspective of the crossroads that couples encounter when pursuing a life-long relationship. The performers again were able to show off their range and unique voices, while being cheered silently by their fellow performers in the room.
Lastly, was a solo performance of, “There Won’t Be Trumpets” which was sung but one of the two female performers in the main four. The song’s tempo increased throughout the piece, evolving from a slow and dreamy piano and voice combination all the way until the end where chords were being quickly churned out over range-defying notes. The song told a story of a woman who was waiting for her true love to finally make an appearance in her life, but is not expecting to notice the person like is advertised on the typical “true-love” sequences of television and movies. The whole song culminates into one final sustained high note held for a few seconds that almost brought the whole roof down on top of us with its sheer power and magnificence. I had to ask Ilyse, after seeing this magnificent display, what advice she could give for the up-and-comers in theater, and she only had this to say,
“The only advice I can give is to be persistent, and to absolutely love what you do. You have to keep trying at it, while also being sure that you are always enjoying yourself and the people around you,” Robbins said. “Then, you will start to perform like you never dreamed of, and success will begin to find you!”