Manchester University
Oak Leaves

March 11, 2016

MU Theatre Heads ‘Into the Woods’ This Spring

Kody Smith

This spring, Manchester students and community members will present Into the Woods, a musical combining a number of famous fairytales. This story, which became a major motion picture in 2014, was written by James Lapine and the music and lyrics were created by Stephen Sondheim. The musical follows the story of a baker and his wife as they have a heavy desire to begin a family. Through their journey, they interact with notable characters from other fairytale stories, including Cinderella, Rapunzel and Jack from “Jack and the Beanstalk.”

Kira Lace Hawkins, a theater lecturer at Manchester University, was drawn to this specific play due to the variety of characters that are offered. “One of the main reasons why I chose this musical is because there is not necessarily a lead character,” she said. “There are not two people that the story necessarily revolves around. It is a huge ensemble piece, which makes it fun.”

Twenty different people are members of the cast, including four individuals from the community of North Manchester. This includes eighth-grade student Madisyn Schmidt, who plays the role of “Little Red Riding Hood.” Additionally, Hawkins has a special relationship with one of the community members involved in the event. “It is great because my mother-in-law, Kathy Hawkins, is involved as well,” she said. “She will be playing the role of Jack’s mother in the musical.” Additional community members include Emily Perkins, who will play the role of the Witch, and Angelina Jung, taking on the popular character of Rapunzel.

Sixteen individuals from Manchester University round out the cast list for the musical. Sophomore Addie Neher will play the part of Cinderella, senior Jacob Archambault will take on the role of Jack, sophomore Clayton Marcum will act as the Baker, and junior Joshua Dold will portray the Wolf.

Hawkins takes a primary interest in the female characters, due to her past experience with the musical. “I am partial to the Baker’s Wife because I have played that role before,” she said. “I believe she is a strong woman, along with the rest of the girls in this show. Even though the female characters take on stereotypical female roles, they are all so strong and are able to stand up for themselves when needed.”

Hawkins expects a great portion of Cordier Auditorium to be filled with excited viewers due to the popularity of the musical. “People really gravitate towards this musical, especially after the movie came out a few years ago,” Hawkins said. “People love it, and I expect a great turnout.”

The presentation takes place at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, April 15 and Saturday, April 16, as well as at 2 p.m. on Sunday, April 17 in Cordier Auditorium. Tickets cost $10 for adults and $7 for students, but members of Manchester University will receive free admission.