You Should See FYP's Newsies

Why You Should See FYP's Newsies

Some words on why this is not something you want to miss.


Since the beginning of this semester, I have had the privilege of being a cast member of First Year Players in their production of Disney's Newsies.

Something important to know about FYP is that every aspect of this organization is directed by the students. From acting, choreography, and music to art, PR, finance, and more, EVERYTHING you will see was brought from the ground up by students.

The show runs April 11 - 13 (Thursday - Saturday) at 8:00 p.m. in Goldstein Auditorium. Tickets are $4 with a SUID, $7 without. They can be bought at the Schine Student Center Box Office, or through this link.

Below are a few reasons to come see our show, told by some of the First-Years.

1. Maddie Wasson, cast member

"I think you should come to see Newsies because (a) it's an incredible show, and a lot of really talented people have been working really hard on it... but also (b) It's sort of a reflection of our societal issues involving young people having a voice in politics, and reflects a lot of current issues in a fun and entertaining way. It's more than just a bunch of first years putting on a Disney show... it's a bunch of young adults using their passion for musical theatre to express how they feel about their futures."

2. Lauren Plattman, stage crew

"You should come to Newsies obviously to see all our hard work, but also because FYP is one of the only organizations that are truly student-run. FYP inspires freshman and transfer students - who didn't even know each other 4 months ago - to come together and create magic both on and off the stage!"

3. Sam Aaronson, cast member

"You should come to see Newsies because it's a show about a group of kids being/becoming a family, and that's exactly what we've done as first-year students and as members of this organization."

4. Andy Phan, pit orchestra

"You should come to see Newsies because the pit simply kills the game. Featuring several individual musicians in the show, the FYP pit orchestra never fails to bring the energy - not only from the music but also to the people on the stage, the wonderful cast! The crew is also incredible. You may also see several familiar faces from bands and a cappella groups!"

5. Michael Loccisano, cast member

"You should come to see Newsies because of the beautiful storyline, and to see the characters fight for what is right in New York City in 1899. Not only that, but the production is all around amazing and such a fun show to be a part of. The talent in this cast is unreal, and the energy from the ensemble and cast as a whole is something I've never felt before on stage. It's something people need to experience in order to believe it. COME SEE NEWSIES!"

6. Emily Graham, pit orchestra

"You should come to see Newsies because it really sends a powerful message about what young people can do to cause a change in their community and in the world. Also, everyone has been pouring their hearts and souls into this show, and the community we have built around it really shows on stage."

7. Annaliese Wilbur, cast member

"You need to come to see Newsies because it contains universality. From dancing acting, and singing to rebellion, love, and heartbreak, there is something in this show that will appeal to every individual in the audience. Everyone can find something to love about NEWSIES!"

8. James Hyman, stage crew

"I think you should come to the show not necessarily because it's going to be absolutely fantastic in every facet of acting, music, and dancing, but because the people who have worked so hard to make this show happen - cast, crew, pit, and staff - are some of the nicest people I have ever met in my life, and deserve all the recognition they can get."

9. Alex Guiliano, pit orchestra

"You should come to see Newsies because the cast, crew, and pit, is CRAZY talented and we want to share our hard work with our peers!"

10. Zach Jasmin, cast member

"You should come to see FYP's production of Newsies because it's a jaw-dropping performance with an eye-opening story. There's no place I'd rather be on April 11,12, and 13th than at Newsies. Tickets for shows at theatres around here usually start at $50. Come see an extraordinary show for just 4 dollars. It's truly an opportunity you can't afford to miss."

11. Bella Rossi, stage crew

"I think that you should come to Newsies because of the ensemble! The ensemble doesn't always get enough love, but this show will be great because whether you're looking at the leads, ensemble, the set, it'll feel real. Everyone's been working hard to make the show as seamless as possible. The ensemble never breaks character and their different personalities absolutely fill up the stage."

12. Kenna Kelley, cast member

"I think you should come to see FYP's Newsies because the amount of love and passion we radiate off the stage will BLOW YOUR MIND. You will feel moved walking out of our show and I am so proud of that! Come see it!"

13. Sydni Tougas, pit orchestra

"You should come to see Newsies for soooo many reasons!!!! The first show I ever saw on Broadway was actually Newsies when I was 13 years old. This show is perfect for people of all ages. I loved it then, and I love it now. It's funny, charming, and - most importantly - very catchy. The music is so infectious in the best way possible. It's the show that got me into musical theatre, and here I am - 6 years later - finally taking part in putting the production together. I am so excited to share this show with more audiences, and really want people to see the enjoyment and thrill this show can provide."

14. Morgan Eaton, cast member

"I think you should see Newsies because it's empowering. It's reflective of our current society, and in that we see the youth making a profound impact on real social issues."

15. Sal Pepe, pit orchestra

"It's an opportunity to see the true passion in its rawest form. The kids here aren't studying to be Broadway actors/actresses or to be professional set designers or musicians, but everyone puts in tons of time because it's what they love to do. Something about getting like-minded people together to do what they love is just magical, and it really makes every second worth it. The show will be amazing and will reflect the absolute joy we take in putting on shows and expressing ourselves through musical theatre!"

16. AJ Santosuasso, stage crew

"It's a bunch of nineteen year olds pretending to be fourteen year-olds. What's not to like?"

17. Ellie Sherfey, cast member

"You should come to see Newsies because we work so so very hard as an all student-produced production and it has been fantastic to work with student staff as opposed to adults! It's also been amazing to be able to be in my favorite show ever with such a talented and collaborative, diverse cast! As a dancer, I look up to this show for its athleticism, but also its deep emotional context bc this kind of life was so real at the time. Please come see Newsies to support this group of people who I've been able to learn so much from."

18. Ian Yates, pit orchestra

"I think you should come to see Newsies because this show is so well executed from every perspective. Sure, most shows can manage to pull great singing, acting, dancing, and stuff like that. But to have a show that is great from a casting standpoint, a technical standpoint with the crew, and a musical standpoint with the pit is something rare and unbelievably special. The bond everyone has formed shows, both on and off the stage, and it makes the show better than it already was."

19. Ben Piers, cast member

"I think you should come to see Newsies because the show is being put on by a bunch of people who literally met each other last month, and to see now are insanely close together theatre has brought us. All of us are best friends, and it really shows on stage. Newsies are definitely something you're not going to want to miss!"

20. Amanda Gabriel, pit orchestra

"YOU should come to see Newsies because it's filled with students who have worked their BUTTS off, and it has some of the most bangin' musical numbers ever. It will be impossible to not have fun!"

21. And lastly... ME! (cast member)

"I love theatre more than almost anything, and I'd first heard about First Year Players in my junior year of high school when I toured SU. I'd had my heart set on it ever since, but I'd had no clue it'd turn out the way it has. FYP has turned out to be so much more to me than a group of freshmen and transfers putting on a show. It's challenged and motivated me in ways I'd never expected, and it's helped me find the confidence that I previously could have only dreamed of. It's truly unlike anything I've ever done or anything you've ever seen... so come see it. You should come to see Newsies to witness for yourself the incredible story we're telling. Performing with such amazing people has been by far the greatest experience ever for me, and I have never been more excited to put on a show for people. Hopefully, I'll see you in the audience!"

Once again...

First Year Players' production of NEWSIES runs April 11 - 13 (Thursday - Saturday) at 8:00 p.m. in Goldstein Auditorium. Tickets are $4 with a SUID, $7 without. They can be bought at the Schine Student Center Box Office, or through this link.

We hope to see you there!

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The 11 Most Meaningful 'Dear Evan Hansen' Quotes

Eleven of my favorite quotes from the new musical "Dear Evan Hansen" that changed my perspective after seeing the musical live.

The new musical Dear Evan Hansen, showing on Broadway's Music Box Theater is a suprisingly uplifting story about a boy who kills himself, and the star of the show (Evan Hansen played by Ben Platt) getting caught up in a messy lie, pretending to be best friends with the boy who took his life.

The story, however, is much more than one of sadness or suicide. It is one of love, the unconditional kind and the kind that you find yourself falling into. It is a story of friendship and forgiveness and owning up to your mistakes. But most importantly it is a story of accepting yourself and becoming confident in your own skin.

I was given the opportunity to see Dear Evan Hansen live on Broadway, and after hearing the songs live, the lyrics gave me a whole new meaning than when I would listen to them in my room through my headphones.

1. "I've learned to slam on the break, before I even turn the key."

Coming from the first song that was released off of the soundtrack "Waving Through a Window," this line helps charactarize Evan as anxious and nervous during interactions with others. Hitting the brake while starting a car is not necessary for it to start, but he creates this metaphor by saying he takes extra and unnecessary cautions before entering any seemingly simple and easy situation. As Evan is characterized, the audience or the listeners are able to connect better to him and to the story because more people than we may know must go through anxious thoughts and actions, that can be very difficult to live with.

2. "No one should stick it out or have any doubt that it matters that they are here."

"Dissappear," a song sung by Evan and his two friends as a proposal to Connor's (boy who committed suicide and was presumably best friends with Evan) parents about a project they are beginning to keep Connor's legacy alive, is a straightforward remark that "no one deserves to dissappear." This quote recognizes the struggles that many people face of hiding their struggles and not doing anything to fix them because they think it would be easier to hide it. It recognizes that people should not have to do this, and it is a request for people who are going through the things that Connor did to reach out and tell people that they are struggling, because it really does get better and asking for help is the first step.

3. "It takes a little patience, takes a little time. A little perseverance and a little uphill climb."

I believe this quote can relate to many things. It is a duet sung by Connor's father and Evan, titled "To Break in A Glove." Though it is literally talking about the correct way to break in a baseball glove, it can also be talking about parenting, school, or recovery from depression, anxiety, or any other mental disorders that can be consuming. Connor's dad was not anything of a prime parent to Connor, and this quote can mean that parenting a kid to your full potential takes patience and time. School, another big struggle in Evan's life as well as Connor's, takes patience but as does the most consuming and memorable aspect that the musical is addressing: overcoming depression and anxiety so that it does not consume you and lead to the decision that Connor ended up making. Though it may seem like a neverending cycle of depressing thoughts, to overcome them it takes patience and perseverance, much like any other accomplishment.

4. "Even when the dark comes crashing through, and when you need a friend to carry you, when you're broken on the ground you will be found."

From what is most definitely my favorite song from the soundtrack, "You Will Be Found" addresses the fact that so many people feel alone and feel as though Connor did. This line shows that even though you may feel alone and you may be at your darkest, deepest point, there will always be help and support and someone to care for you. You are not alone.

5. "I'd rather pretend I'm something better than these broken parts, pretend I'm something other than this mess that I am."

The line from "Words Fail" shows Evan at his most vulnerable. It shows the side of him that he wishes no one to witness because it is his worst side. I find this song to be the most emotional, and most importantly because the lyrics can be related to so well. With depression and anxiety, people can act out and do things as they see fit to make themselves feel better, which is partly what Evan did, pretending to be Connor's friend. This quote shows the reasons behind those actions, helping people in the same position feel relieved for the things that they think are going wrong only for them.

6. "When you're falling in a forest and there's nobody around do you evern really crash or even make a sound?"

This line is another from "Waving Through a Window" and ties to Evan's anxiety as well. It shows the slow deterioration of one's mind, and how no one even notices when someone is going through things like that, hence the metaphor to the tree falling in a forest and no one hearing it because no one is there. It is making a notion to the fact, also, that people are so afraid to discuss the issues of suicide and depression and anxiety, and that it is a problem especially among youth.

7. "Why should I play the grieving girl and lie saying that I miss you and that my world has gone dark without your light?"

This line from "Requiem," sung by Connor's sister and parents, is a different perspective of what happened to Connor, a more cynical perspective. While it may seem insensitive, I enjoy that Zoe (Connor's sister) stands her ground with her relationship with her brother and remains indifferent, instead of lying about loving him just because she isn't able to anymore.

8. "If I could tell her how she's everything to me, but we're a million worlds apart and I don't know how I would even start."

Although this is about how Evan feels about Zoe - not Connor - it shows how crippling it can be to wish you could be able to tell someone something, especially about your mental disablities, but you feel like you can't because you aren't close enough or don't know where to begin.

9. "So you got what you always wanted, so you got your dream come true, good for you."

This song is a turning point in the musical where Evan's actions begin to creep back up on him. It shows that even though you get what you wish for, it isni't always perfect all together. This line shows also that what you first think you want isn't always going to lead to the perfect life or the perfect girl or the perfect family, and you must not face your struggles with lies as Evan did.

10. "Your mom isn't going anywhere your mom is staying right here no matter what, I'll be here."

This comes from the song "So Big/So Small," when Evan apoligizes to his mother about abandoning her essentially for Connor's parents and she confesses to the hardships she has faced as a single mother who doesn't make much money. This is one of my favorite quotes, because it displays unconditional love from your family, and shows that no matter what it is you go through and no matter how much loathe you may feel for yourself, your family loves you and supports you.

11. "Dear Evan Hansen, today is going to be a great day and here's why: because today at least you're you and, well, that's enough."

These opening words to the finale close up the message of the show: that you are enough, no matter what anyone tells you and no matter what you begin to tell yourself. Making mistakes is human, as is having depression or anxiety, and just because you make mistakes or you have depressed thoughts does not mean that you are any less of a person than someone who doesn't feel the same as you. This musical and this line taught me that no matter what, you are wanted, you are needed, and you are worth it no matter what you do or what you go through.

Cover Image Credit: Dear Evan Hansen Official Website

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We Need To Give Theatre At Festivals A Chance

Watching theater being performed outdoors and in smaller places is the old way of watching shows.


With May being about Mental Health awareness, It shows that we need to expose people to the arts more often. The Orlando Fringe Festival is the longest running festival in the Orlando area. It provides an accessible and affordable outlet to bring the community together to create experiences through the arts. This festival takes place around the Loch Haven Park for about 2 weeks leading up to Memorial Day. It has around 500 uncensored performances each year and has something for all ages. Imagine something like this in every city. I feel like it would bring up the morale of each of the populations and get that vitamin D that everyone needs.

The artists that put in for the Orlando Fringe go through an application process and the cool part is for those outside Orlando that there is housing guaranteed for up to 4 people. That's something you don't hear everyday especially if the event lasts about two weeks. A festival like this is good for the soul and also good for the wallet. It gets people out into the community and provides exposure to the arts in an age-appropriate way. It provides an opportunity for people to go outside and enjoy the weather as we transition into summer. It's a perfect way for artists to showcase their craft and to expand their creativity. Its a prime example of why we should never stop learning.

If you are heading to Orlando Fringe from May 13th to 26th. I would check out multiple shows. Through talking to some of the artists, I found that the "How to Eat A Bear" Show is one of the shows to see. Luke Balagia and Mack Stine are the directors of the show. The show is based off a weird joke on a dating profile for Luke. These two met in an improv class 4 years ago and have been creating material ever since. They refuse to call it working because of it not being "Baller." It is a perfect example of if you do something you love, you never work a day in your life. With all of the love and care put into this, why wouldn't you want to go see it? The alternative is two men in the theater crying...

How To Eat A Bear Flyer Orlando Fringe

Imagine if the world was exposed to more of the arts, how much less mental health issues. Why do you think there is art therapy for those with mental health therapy. I've noticed that when people attend any celebration of the arts that they are happier people and make the best conversationalists. Being able to provide an alternative perspective on life is a beautiful gift that not a lot of people can give. With festivals like The Orlando Fringe, it provides a cheaper way to view the arts while going out into the community. Would you rather be stuck inside doing nothing or go out into the community and learn something about the arts?

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