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Black goes solo in song and on stage Rachel Trout entertainment editor Mary Beth Black, junior, was recently cast as Audrey in the musical Little Shop of Horrors at St. Louis University High, taking the only female spot in the entire production. All the other female characters were replaced with male actors, making this position as the only female role and leading lady highly competitive. “I was hoping Mary Beth would get the part, but because they were only casting for Audrey, it was hard to know what would happen,” Barbara Black, Mary Beth’s mother, said. “I was so excited for her.” All female actresses auditioning for the part of Audrey read the same scenes and sang the same music. This constant made it crucial for Mary Beth to stand out throughout the whole audition process. “Mary Beth has this powerhouse voice that no one can compete with,” Sammi Kuehnlein, senior and actress who worked with Mary Beth in previous shows, said. Being the only female in the show completely changed the dynamic of theater for Mary Beth. Without her usual female companions, she said she is able to be more focused on her part. “This makes the process much more serious and

makes me concentrate more on my role because there aren’t many distractions,” Mary Beth said. Mary Beth said there is a surprising amount of pressure being the only female in the room, however. Not only is she expected to thrive as Audrey, but she is also expected to help males portraying female roles how to improve their roles. Regardless of the pressure, Mary Beth is excited about her part. “I was so happy that I had gotten the role because Little Shop of Horrors is one of my favorite shows,” Mary Beth said. “And I absolutely love Audrey.” Barbara thinks Mary Beth got her talent come from her piano teaching grandmother and her Broadway musical director/orchestrator uncle because Black has been involved with theater since before third grade and singing since she was a baby. “When she was a baby, she would make these highpitched sounds with her voice instead of the normal cooing,” Barbara said. “She has always loved to perform, and I love seeing her so happy on stage.” Regardless Black is known for her skills as an individual making this role exciting for her fans. “It’s a great character role, and I think she’ll be amazing in the part,” Kuehnlein said. “Not to mention the solo song that she will nail without a doubt.”

Rachel Trout entertainment editor

Never blue with the Avett Brothers Jane Manwarring copy editor

photo courtesy of MCT Campus

The Avett Brothers Setlist The Fabulous Fox Theater Sept. 29, 2012

1. “Die Die Die” 2. “Head Full of Doubt/ Road Full of Promise” 3. “Living of Love” 4. “Will You Return” 5. “A Fathers First Spring” 6. “Distraction #74” 7. “January Wedding” 8. “Paranoia In B Major” 9. “February Seven” 10. “Live and Die” 11. “Murder In The City” 12. “Souls Like the Wheels” 13. “I Would Be Sad” 14. “And It Spread”

15. “The Perfect Space” 16. “If It’s the Beaches” 17. “Hand Me Down Tune” 18. “Go To Sleep” 19. “Down With The Shine” 20. “Laundry Room” 21. “Old Joe Clark” 22. “I Never Knew You” 23. “Kick Drum Heart” 24. “The Once and Future Carpenter” 25. “I and Love and You” 26. “Talk On Indolence” 27. “Shady Grove” 28. “Alabama Gals” 29.”November Blue”

The first time I saw the Avett Brothers live three years ago at the St. Louis Pageant, I instantly fell in love with them and their impeccable harmonies, genius lyrics, wide variety of styles and massive musical talent. By the second time I saw them in Springfield in March, easily my favorite band by then, I was further awed by their capabilities as musicians and endless energy on stage. The band’s sound is impossible to squeeze into one genre, ranging from folk and bluegrass to rock. The only similarities found in the songs is their earnest love and passion for performing. As the expression goes, the third time’s the charm. The Avett Brothers performed a perfectly arranged 29-song set list Sept. 29 at the Fabulous Fox Theater, featuring hits from every album excluding their unpolished 2002 Carolina Jubilee. The Avett Brothers consist of North Carolina’s singing brothers Scott Avett, who primarily plays banjo and Seth Avett, primarily guitarist, both taking turns on the piano, bassist Bob Crawford, cellist Joe Kwon and drummer Jacob Edwards. The brothers ran onto the stage fashionably late with the crowd-pleasing “Die Die Die” off their 2007 record Emotionalism, immediately transitioning to the popular “Head Full of Doubt / Road Full of Promise.” These openers brought the crowd to their feet and kept them there throughout the night. After 10 energy-filled songs, the rest of

the band cleared the stage for Scott and Seth to play the tear-jerking “Murder in the City” and “Souls Like the Wheels,” where the brothers had the chance to show off their clear, unprocessed voices. When Kwon, Edwards and Crawford made their way back to the stage, they lifted the crowd back up with their rendition of the upbeat instrumental “Old Joe Clark,” inspiring square dancing and cowboy boot tapping amongst the 5,060 flannel-wearing fans. Following two hours of nonstop enthusiasm, the quintet played their hit “I And Love And You,” waved to the crowd, ran off the stage and feigned the end of the show. After two minutes of unbroken screaming the boys returned to their bases to perform their encore, playing “Talk on Indolence”, “Shady Grove” and “Alabama Gals.” Responding to shouted requests throughout the entire evening, the brothers strayed away from their original setlist to end with “November Blue,” a fan favorite from their 2002 album Country Was. The live version excluded the jaunty piano part and required a much slower tempo. “November Blue” seemed to tie together the entire concert and bring closure to the night, as fans sang along, swayed and held hands. They left the stage permanently this time, with Seth responding to the never-ending cheers, “Thanks for being so nice to us y’all.” As if we would have been anything but. When the concert ended, The Avett Brothers impressed everyone with their country boy charm off stage, taking the time to meet, talk to and take pictures with fans waiting for them outside. The newest Avett Brothers album, The Carpenter, is now available on iTunes.


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