PEMCo, FTT perform ‘Little Shop of Horrors’
Andrea Vale | Thursday, November 19, 2015
In conjunction with Notre Dame’s Pasquerilla East Musical Company (PEMCo), the department of film, television and theatre is staging a production of “Little Shop of Horrors” this week. The show will be performed Nov. 18 through Nov. 22 in the Patricia George Decio Theatre of the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center (DPAC).
A dark comedy based on the 1960 film of the same name, the musical “The Little Shop of Horrors” has had several Broadway and off-Broadway runs.
“I think the show is wildly campy, but it also has a lot of heart,” junior Quint Mediate said. “I think it’s a ‘be careful what you wish for’ story, and it explores the lengths that people will go through for the people that they love.”
Mediate plays the lead role of Seymour Krelborn, whom he describes as a “geeky flower shop attendant” who develops a “crossbreed, man-eating plant called the Audrey II,” after his secret crush Audrey, who is portrayed by junior Maggie Moran.
“Audrey is such a wonderful character to play, because she is sweet and lovable and purely herself,” Moran said. “Her story is a heartbreaking because she has lived a tough life and feels that she doesn’t deserve love and happiness. But throughout the show, she is pushed on a journey of discovery of self-worth.
“What I enjoy most about Audrey is her selflessness and belief in goodness in the world despite her hardship,” she said. “We have a lot to learn from her and the way she fearlessly opens her heart to the world.”
Mediate said production began with a particularly enjoyable audition process.
“[It] was really fun,” Mediate said. “Maggie and I were called back for Audrey and Seymour, and during the callback number we unexpectedly decided to kiss at the end of the song. The director really liked it, and here we are.”
That audition process, according to Mediate, was followed up by a rehearsal and production period that required a lot of effort and dedication from all involved.
“The rehearsal process has been pretty grueling,” Mediate said. “The cast is pretty small — only about ten people — so the show relies heavily on a small number of people. It is actually one of the most tiring shows I have been a part of. But it is incredibly rewarding.”
Both Mediate and Moran said “Little Shop of Horrors” will be a particularly memorable production and encouraged students to attend.
“The show is unique because of the technical elements,” Mediate said, “A guest director by the name of R.J. Haddy was brought in to design all of the plants at the various stages of their growth. R.J. is an incredible special effects designer; he was actually a finalist on season two of [television channel] Syfy’s reality show ‘Face Off.’ These technical elements make the show worthwhile to come see on stage. I promise you won’t be disappointed.”
Moran said the comedic elements of the show complement its deeper message.
“This show is unique because it is full of absurdity and yet very real,” she said. “The characters and plot are laughably extreme and very entertaining, but at the same time, the themes underneath are so true and relevant to real life. I think that this is the greatest achievement of this show. I hope that our audiences see this and love it as much as we do.”
Tickets for the show are $9 for students and can be purchased from performingarts.nd.edu