Sense and Sensibility: A New Musical

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Trinity International University’s (TIU) Music Department will be putting on Sense and Sensibility: A New Musical on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and on Sunday at 3:00 p.m. (Nov. 10–11) in the A. T. Olson Chapel.

This musical adaptation of Jane Austen’s first published novel is the first collaboration of  alumni composer Joshua Tyra (music and lyrics), based in Chicago, and playwright Gemma Cooper-Novack (book and lyrics), based in Boston. This weekend will be the first time their adaption of the play is performed.

Auditions for the musical were held in early September, and the cast has been rehearsing weekly ever since.

Sophomore Kate Arnold will be playing the part of Sophia Grey in the musical. “I’ve enjoyed studying the plot and getting to know the different characters. It’s been a really good experience to participate in something that’s never been done before,” Arnold said.

In the musical, Tyra’s score draws its inspiration from the social music of Austen’s day, English country dance tunes and popular parlor songs. Cooper-Novack’s book engages the unique voices of Austen’s characters, connecting the novel’s scenarios in fresh ways. The lyrics in the piece draw upon several sources of inspiration, from Austen’s own words to the poetry and prose of her time to the stylistic ingenuity of W.S. Gilbert, creating a musical that captures the essence of the novel and the tone of Austen’s time with a thoughtful and playful flair.

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