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Page 74 text:
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Page 73 text:
Becky Burlo serves a vital service
with her violin for the thespians on
Concentrating intently on her
music, Betty Laster plays her violin
while cast members take center
Jay Seiden plays his clarinet during
the rendition of "Fugue for
Tin Horns. "
part is lacking," said Pope. Conversely, a member of a symphony
usually has two to ten instrumentalists on the same part,
Another difference is created by combining the varied skills of
vocalists, dancers, actors, and musicians into one cumbersome
package. The pace and timing of the play rests on the musicians'
entrances and tempo. "The actors, singers, and dancers are
totally dependent on the orchestra so there has to be a complete
awareness and alertness on the part of the musicians," said Pope.
Because of the limited area alloted to the orchestra, there is
great difficulty in the maneuverability of certain instruments.
"You have people crawling on top of you to find their places,"
Lack of exposure didn't bother Brown during "Guys and Dolls,"
but he did agree that it "takes a more advanced player with a
professional attitude" to perform in a pit orchestra.
Because of the experience gained last year in previous
musicals, many problems in organizing the factions of a musical
were eliminated in "Guys and Dolls." l
Long before the pit orchestra see their original Broadway
scores, Pope puts in hours of homework. His preparation includes
making mental and written notes on changes in tempo, editing,
and changes in cues in the conductor's score. He must watch and
work with the actors before the first notes of the score are played
by the orchestra.
"The more I see the production, the more I am able to convey
the mood of the music to the orchestraf' said Pope. "The score
gives you the basic notes but it doesn't tell you all that you have
These moods that must be conveyed to the orchestra are
essential to the overall effect of the play. One section of the play
is set inside a Salvation Army Mission, so the music is sometimes
very simple and church-like, and other times it is like a Salvation
Army Band. The same holds true for the music that accompanies
a scene in a second-class night club. "The music sets the mood,
and, in certain cases, helps to identify the characters," explained
That identification with nostalgic '40's music provided "Guys
and Dolls" with an added audience appeal. "People get more out
of a musical because there are more people involved," said
Browne. "The audience can have a whole story told to them with
music and acting." That whole story was well received this spring
with the production of "Guys and Dolls."
From a bird's eye view, Ken Pierce
performs on the drums with the pit
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Page 75 text:
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Coordinated and Illustrated
by Mike Russell
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