SJU Theatre Company Presents “Guys and Dolls”

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

by Rosemary Martin '14

PHILADELPHIA (April 8, 2014)—The Saint Joseph’s University Theatre Company is returning to a classic musical with their spring performance of “Guys and Dolls.” Performances begin on Thursday, April 10, and end on Sunday, April 27, at 2 p.m., on campus in Bluett Theater in Post Hall.

“Guys and Dolls” portrays gang life in New York during the 1920s and 1930s and  is based on short stories written by Damon Runyon. The stories were made into a musical thanks to the collaboration of Frank Loesser, Jo Swerling, and Abe Burrows. Debuting on Broadway in 1950, the five-time Tony Award-winning show ran for 1,200 consecutive performances and was revived in the 1990s with 1,100 shows. The musical was also made into a movie in 1955 that starred Frank Sinatra, Marlon Brando and Vivian Blaine. It has maintained its popularity through the decades, despite its age, with its captivating storyline and catchy numbers such as  “Luck Be A Lady” and  “If I Were A Bell.”

The cast is composed of 20 students, one alumnus in Nick Virginio ’10, who plays Sky Masterson, and associate professor of finance George Webster, Ph.D., from the Haub School of Business who plays Arvide. This show is a change for most of the cast who have been involved in the recent contemporary musicals “Next To Normal,” “Spring Awakening” and “Rent.”

“Since the students have been focused on contemporary musical theatre for the past year-and -a-half, it is a great opportunity for them to experience one of the musicals from the ‘golden era of American musical theatre,’” said Renee Dobson, M.F.A. associate professor of music, theatre and film, and the show’s director. “It calls on their singing, dancing and acting skills to make this musical work. It has also been a wonderful opportunity for the students to create the colorful characters inspired by Runyon.”

Performances run April 10, 11, 12, 25 and 26 at 8 p.m., with a matinee on April 27 at 2 p.m., in the Bluett Theatre, located inside of Post Hall on Overbrook Avenue near 56th Street. Tickets are $10 for students, faculty, staff (showing proper identification), and senior citizens, and $18 for general admission. To reserve tickets, call 610-660-1181. For more information, or to order tickets online, visit the SJU Theatre Company’s website.


As Philadelphia's Jesuit, Catholic University, founded by the Society of Jesus in 1851, Saint Joseph's University provides a rigorous, student-centered education rooted in the liberal arts. SJU ranks as a top university in the Northeast, with a Phi Beta Kappa chapter in the College of Arts and Sciences and AACSB accreditation of the  Erivan K. Haub School of Business. The University is also deeply committed to the Jesuit tradition of scholarship and service, earning a place on the President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll and the community engagement classification from the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. With courses offered on campus and online, SJU prepares its more than 8,000 undergraduate, graduate and doctoral students to lead lives of personal excellence, professional success and engaged citizenship.


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