WJU Students to Perform ‘Pippin’

An ensemble cast of Wheeling Jesuit students will take to the stage inside the university’s Troy Theater this April to perform the musical “Pippin.”

Heir to the Frankish throne, the young prince Pippin is in search of the secret to true happiness and fulfillment. He seeks it in the glories of the battlefield, the temptations of the flesh and the intrigues of political power. In the end, though, Pippin finds that happiness lies not in extraordinary endeavors, but rather in the unextraordinary moments that happen every day.

The show will be held at 8 p.m. Thursday, April 12, and Thursday, April 13, and at 1 p.m. Saturday, April 14, and Sunday, April 15. The show is under the direction of Dave Henderson from Oglebay Institute.

The cast will tell the story of Pippin, a young prince who longs to find passion and adventure in his life. To prove his loyalty to his distracted father, King Charles, Pippin goes to war, but when the Leading Player convinces the prince to fight tyranny, Pippin kills the King and takes over the throne. Realizing his mistake, Pippin begs the Leading Player to bring his father back to life, and she obliges.

Pippin falls in love with Catherine, a widow with a young son and, much to the Leading Player’s chagrin, he struggles to decide whether he should settle down and pursue a peaceful life.

The musical features such songs as “Corner of the Sky,” “Magic to Do,” “Love Song” and “I Guess I’ll Miss the Man.”

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The cast includes: Pippin: Vince Fournier; Leading Player: Halli Richards; Charles: Stephen Hansknecht; Lewis: Pierce Griffith; Fastrada: Christine Mellic; Catherine: Bernadette Tirador; Berthe: Mackenzie Shepard; and Theo: Nate Foster.

Members of the ensemble are: Emily Slack, Joey Thomas, Berenice Teliz, Felicity Nolder, Anne Frankovich, Karly Morell, Rachel Smissen, Dalton Rollison, Nate Foster, Rachel Watson and Dona’e Albert.

Production crew includes: stage manager, Cody Stanton; technical director, George Bell; sound: Mike Battista; costumes, Oglebay Institute School of Dance, Stages of Wheeling; set construction, Cody Stanton, Joey Thomas, George Bell and the cast; musical director/conductor, Robert Troeger, WJU director of vocal music; orchestra coordinator, Anthony Panebianco, WJU director of instrumental music; choreography, Cheryl Pompeo, Oglebay Institute School of Dance.

The cast also will perform songs from the musical during WJU’s annual Gaudiosa – Wheeling Jesuit’s annual gala to support scholarships for students – Saturday, April 14.

Performances are free on a first-come basis. Reservations are not taken. Call 304-243-2095 for more information

Pictured above: Wheeling Jesuit University students will perform the musical “Pippin” April 12-15 inside Troy Theater. Cast members include, front, from left: Rachel  Watson, Dona’e Albert, Nate Foster, Berenice Teliz and Anne Frankovich; back, from left, Stephen Hansknecht, Pierce Griffith, Vince Fournier, Halli Richards, Bernadette Tirador, Christine Mellick and Mackenzie Shepard.