By James Drzewiecki
BRISTOL — "Rent" is coming to a new non-profit summer-stock theater program that is being put together by Bristol Central High School’s Lindsey DiPietro.
DiPietro is an a 11th-grade English teacher who teaches two drama classes and is also the drama advisor at Bristol Central.
Her love of drama came when she was 8 years old, when she appeared in her first show.
"My uncle is a director and put me in my first show, ‘The Wizard of Oz,’" DiPietro said.
Her love only grew from there and continues to be very active in drama, having just directed Central’s spring musical, "Footloose."
Now, Dipietro is in the process of setting up summer-stock, and "Rent" will be the first show that they will tackle.
"This particular show is for kids 18 and under but in subsequent years, I will open it to high school-aged up through recent college grads," said DiPietro. "We wanted to start with a youth production and then go from there."
This is a program that she has big hopes for and wants to see it continue for years to come.
"The mission is to have a musical production every summer, which involves kids from all three high schools," DiPietro said.
Composer and playwright Johnathan Larson was the creator of "Rent." He took home two posthumous Tony Awards and one posthumous Pulitzer Prize for his work.
"Rent" is a rock opera that follows the lives of a group of struggling bohemians in New York City’s East Village. The play takes place in a period, 1989 to 1990. In that year we see the characters deal with loss, love and AIDS. It’s truly a very real look at modern-day life.
"I’ve always wanted to direct ‘Rent’ so I’m thrilled that it’s now available for production," DiPietro said. "I would also love to direct ‘Aida.’ The music is so amazing and I just love that show."
Auditions for ‘Rent’ will be held Sunday from 5 to 9 p.m. in the Bristol Central High School band room.
To be in the play, you must be 18 or younger at the time of the audition. Be prepared to sing 16 to 32 bars of music. Play organizers suggest singing the part of the song that shows your range. People auditioning should bring sheet music that has chords or a CD with the background (karaoke) track. Make sure that there are no vocals on the track. Find a rock/pop song or more modern "rock" musical song to sing, do not sing a classical musical theater song. Dress comfortably and not in costume.
This will be a closed audition, so no one will be able to watch. There will be a $100 participation fee if cast in the show, which can be paid with two payments of $50.
Callbacks will be held June 1 and June 3 through 7. In callbacks performers will read from the script and be asked to learn a small dance combination.
"We have so much talent in Bristol and I think it would be great for kids to work with other people their age as well as other directors," DiPietro said.