‘Kinky Boots’ comes to BW

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






Baldwin Wallace University has a decades-old history with the Broadway community. It continues to gain attention in the Broadway world, especially this fall with the academic premiere of Cyndi Lauper and Harvey Fierstein’s Tony-Award-winning musical, “Kinky Boots.”

The music theatre program has a history with “Kinky Boots” that goes from Broadway to the road. Kyle Post ‘07 played an integral role in Baldwin Wallace securing the rights for the popular show. He was in the Broadway company for a long time, and that relationship cinched the deal for Baldwin Wallace.

“We knew quite a while before we announced as we couldn’t make it public until after the tour had closed,” said Greg Daniels, Associate Professor and head of the dance program.

Everyone involved is in intensive rehearsals for the next several weeks, according to Victoria Bussert, director of the music theatre program. Auditions were held earlier in the semester, yet the auditions for the character, Lola, were held last April for the actors to begin learning their role and get shoes fitted in the costume shop.

The show is double-casted with Nick Drake ‘20 and Gordia Hayes ‘20 performing as Lola, the extravagant performer in need of stiletto heels to dance in. The cast features a multitude of BW students in different years. Charlie H. Ray ‘20 and Andrew Faria ‘22 will take on the role of Charlie who helps and learns from Lola.

For Drake, this role has been number one since witnessing Billy Porter accept the Tony Award for his performance as Lola.

“I just remember when [“Kinky Boots”] was on the Tony Awards, watching this gay black man win his Tony and perform… I always knew that watching that show… I need to do this,” said Drake.

Drake notes that there is a lot of pressure because this is the academic premiere of this show, but Drake said he cannot wait to “sing those songs in front of people and not in a mirror in my room!”

The professors involved in the show are getting excited for the rehearsal process and performances, too. “It’s incredibly exciting to bring this groundbreaking musical to Baldwin Wallace and the rest of the folks in the area,” said Matthew Webb, assistant professor and music director.

The musical is based on the 2005 film of the same name. It won the Tony Award for Best Musical in 2013, and Billy Porter won the Best Performance by an Actor in a Musical Tony Award for his portrayal of Lola.

The musical follows the theme of acceptance and love. Webb notes that one line in particular stands out: “‘You can change the world when you change your mind.’”

Drake says that this show is incredibly relevant to today’s audience. “The best thing to do is come and see the show because it’s all about accepting people for who they are… being able to live your true self every day… and I think every person anywhere and everywhere can learn something from this show,” noted Drake.

Bussert says that “this is one not to miss.”

Performances run Nov 12-24 at the Kleist Center for Art and Drama. Student tickets are available at the box office or online.

 

 

Print Friendly, PDF & Email