We wanted to know more about what it’s like being involved in a student club, so we asked Sarah Dunford ’19 (City), Director of the Macaulay Theater Club a few questions. Here’s what she had to say…
What pushed you to join/ tryout for the Theater Club?
Theater has always been a huge part of my life. I grew up watching Broadway shows and listening to cast recordings with my family, and I’ve been performing in school and community productions since elementary school. When I got to college, Macaulay Theater Club seemed like a natural fit.
How has the Theater Club made a difference in your college (and Macaulay) experience as a whole?
I’ve been a part of the Macaulay Theater Club since my first semester and participated in every Macaulay Theater Club performance since then. I’ve assistant-directed for two semesters, and this semester I am directing my second show. It’s been an extremely rewarding experience for me because it’s truly a collaborative effort. The club is open to all CUNY students, no matter their major or prior experience with theater. We are able to use each cast member’s skills in a unique way, and it’s especially fulfilling as a director to watch how all of the pieces come together.
What major events has the Theater Club participated in over the course of this past year?
Macaulay Theater Club typically does a musical in the fall and a play in the spring. Last semester, we performed “Fairy Tale Courtroom” by Dana Proulx. It’s a twist on common fairy tales, with the Big Bad Wolf and the Wicked Witch being put on trial. It was a very cute show, and lots of fun to work on. This coming semester, we are performing “Godspell”, with a book by John-Michael Tebelak and music and lyrics by Stephen Schwartz. The cast has been putting lots of hard work into it, and we’re super excited to put it in front of an audience this November!
What was the Theater Club’s (or your own) biggest accomplishment?
Our biggest accomplishment hasn’t been one particular event, but the trajectory of the club overall. When I first joined as a freshman, Macaulay Theater Club was just starting out the former directors, Jessica and Anthony, had founded the club the semester prior. There have been plenty of challenges that the club has overcome since then. We’ve had situations where we didn’t have enough cast members to fill all necessary roles; we’ve also had to make do with a limited budget and resources. But the club is really growing. We have a cast of 14 this semester, which is more than we’ve ever had in the past. And we have been building up our collection of props and costumes, so we have more options to pull from for any given show.
What are your hopes and aspirations for the club’s future?
This is actually my last semester with Macaulay Theater Club, since I am working on some set design projects at my home campus in the spring. My assistant director Robin has a clear vision for how she wants to proceed with the club. She wants to focus on building up a creative team — designating people as choreographer, music director, tech director, social media/advertising director, and so on. I trust that the club is in good hands, and I’m very excited to come back and see future productions!