Review: Freshman cabaret "Brand New You" spotlights student talent

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The Cast of Frosh Cab

The Newtonite

by Douglas Abrams

Freshman Cabaret “Brand New You,” set to go up tonight and tomorrow at 7:30 p.m. in the auditorium, puts student talent center stage, focusing on the development of students as performers, according to sophomore Jackson Bunis, a director along with sophomores Jen Gately, Caroline Kaler, and Amanda Kuo.

The show starts out with a group number, featuring the whole cast singing “It’s Time” by Fun. The simple, black costumes and lighting design make student singing and dancing the focal point.

Kaler said that the point of the show is to expose freshman performers. “I want people to see just how talent our freshman performers are,” said Kaler. “Sometimes people think they are not as good because they are the youngest and that is not true.”

In all, the show had about 30 short scenes, ranging from dance numbers and skits to songs.  The scenes themselves were also varied in their topic. A stirring ballad was often followed by a comical skit; a powerful, 40-man wall of sound often preceded a sharp dance number—just enough emotion, just enough levity.

One hilarious dance number was performed by all the boys in the show. In one line across the stage, they strutted back and forth, pointing at the audience and sassily flipping their hair to “Pretty Girl Rock” by Keri Hilson. The number contrasted the one that preceded it, which was an anthemic rendition of “Take a Chance on Me” by Abba performed by all the girls on the cast.

Another standout number took a comical look at driving instruction. It was performed by freshmen Rebecca Finck, Fin Grafe, and Kamryn Hoag. In the skit, a student driver was given poor driving instruction by an overly emotional and mischievous driving instructor.

In one especially emotional duet, freshmen Liana Glennon and Erique Green sang “Let Me See Beneath Your Beautiful” by Emeli Sandé. The two performers voices complimented each others’ perfectly. The performance was tender and heartfelt.

Ultimately, the show was anchored by student talent. “Our performers are dedicated,” said Kaler. They really want the show to be good. I love them.”