‘Crazy for You’ cast preps for classic, energetic American musical

Video by Kassondra Cloos, Ashley Fahey and Madelyn Smith

Story by Ashley Fahey and Madelyn Smith

They’re just two weeks into the rehearsal process, but it’s clear the actors of Elon University’s fall musical are already having fun.

The cast has been rehearsing five days a week for the upcoming production “Crazy For You,” written by Ken Ludwig with music and lyrics by George and Ira Gershwin. The show will open Oct. 25.

“It is truly hilarious,” said Taylor Aucott, a junior music theatre major. “It’s very funny, very cleverly written. Obviously there are (the) soft parts and the more dramatic parts but ultimately, it’s a very feel good musical.”

“Crazy for You” is considered a more traditional song-and-dance style show. It centers around a middle-of-nowhere town in Nevada, where the locals are attempting to put on a musical.

Many aspects of the show are new to some of the cast members, especially following last fall’s production of “Hair.” “Crazy for You” is less centered around the actors and more focused on the actual characters, according to junior music theatre major Karrah Fleshman.

“Hair was based in the late ‘60s,” she said. “It was very experimental and very open-ended. With this musical, it’s kind of more structured, it has this specific story plot and the characters carry themselves very differently.”

With the major numbers in the first act largely under their belts, the cast is busy sharpening dance routines and trying to get off book as soon as possible, said Ben Redding, a senior music theatre major.

“We are showing up to rehearsal every night, putting in those hours and eventually it will all come together,” he said.

Fleshman said rehearsals will relocate to McCrary Theatre starting in October, when the cast will be rehearsing seven days a week.

It’s hard to gauge the progress of the show at such an early stage, Aucott said, but he’s excited to see how the performance develops.

“It’s at a very good place for where we are in the process, but I don’t know what is to come,” Aucott said. “Cathy McNeela and Linda Sabo, our director and choreographer, are brilliant, so I’m sure it’s going to be wonderful. But it’s still somewhat of a mystery to me.”

The players of “Crazy for You” are enthusiastic about the musical’s high energy and witty dialogue.

“There’s a lot of dramatic irony in it, so the audience knows what’s going on, but the people on stage don’t know what’s going on,” Aucott said. “It’s very funny to see how people can handle (it).”

The dance numbers also contribute to the show’s quirkiness and charm.

“A lot of dance rehearsals are kicking our butts,” Fleshman said. “(Sabo) is just a creative genius. In ‘Slap that Bass,’ there’s this iconic human bass number where the girls pretend they’re bass cellos.”

Aucott said it is an entertaining and good, old-fashioned tap show with great dancing, acting and singing.

Other cast members seemed to share the same sentiment. Fleshman, who plays a showgirl, called it a “wonderful show.” She encouraged audiences to look out for the twists and turns of a classic love story.

“It’s filled with dancing and cowboys and love and wonderfulness,” she said.

Kassondra Cloos contributed reporting.

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