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The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

‘Boeing Boeing’ takes off during opening weekend

You are a bachelor living in Paris in the 1960s, and one day, by complete chance, all three of your flight attendant fiancées show up to your bachelor pad at the same time. We have all been there before, right?

Hopefully not, but this is the plot of “Boeing Boeing,” which the Guilford College theatre studies department began showing April 8-10 and will be performing yet again this weekend, April 15-16, in Sternberger Auditorium.

On opening night, there was hardly ever a time when Sternberger was not filled with laughter, applause or the occasional “Ooh.”

“It was extremely hilarious,” said first-year Catherine Thomson. “The cast and crew paid so much attention to detail, and this is just not a play where you can look away. It really was fantastic.”

Featuring only a six-member cast, “Boeing Boeing” stars first-year Julius Frank as Bernard, junior Tarilabo Koripamo as Gloria, first-year Margaret McKinney as Gabriella, senior Victoria Saraldi-Gallardo as Berthe, junior Colin Tripp as Robert and senior Nina Troy as Gretchen.

“It was funny all the way through with never a dull moment,” said Doubara Koripamo, Koripamo’s sister. “I couldn’t take my eyes off the stage,” “My sister is in the play, and she rocked it. I can’t tell you how much energy it took me not to just scream ’yes!’”

Visually, a lot of work went into “Boeing Boeing.” Planning of the set design began while “Godspell” was still playing, but construction of the set did not begin until mid-February.

“Time in the theatre (is) expensive,” said Robin Vest, assistant professor of theatre studies and resident designer. “There’s just a few of us (working on the set), so we have to be able to move fast to get it all done. You feel over-prepared for anything you tackle when you work in a theatre for a little while.”

The set is heavily based on French interior décor of the 1960s, featuring colors and designs based on the designs of Parisian interior designer Madeleine Castaing. At its center, the set has a window looking out on an imaginary view of Paris, styled after travel agency ads of the time.

“This play is not a heavy, thematic or emotional landscape sort of play like Medea (play) or like a Shakespeare (play),” said Vest. “It’s light, it’s fun, it’s period-specific, it’s sexy and it’s set in this great period of the 60s with Americans in Paris.”

Matching the set itself, the costumes were colorful, vibrant and grounded in the time period.

“It’s always wonderful to see all of the elements come together,” said senior and theatre department’s costume shop manager Lee Sisson. “I work in costumes, so I saw all of these pieces in working with them, but seeing them on stage and seeing them come to life on stage is amazing. It’s a rush.”

So much time and work has gone into this production, and it really showed come opening night.

“(This) was my senior thesis,” said Troy. “I read the play in June, got cast in August and have been working on it all year. This is something I’ve been laboring over, and finally being able to present that was amazing.

“The combination of nerves, terror, excitement and happiness is just a great one.”

Final showings will be this weekend April 15-16. Deborah Leisey and Bethany Hamm-Whitfield will interpret the show on April 15 in sign language.

“If you want to have a great time and enjoy yourself and just have an evening of laughing for the sake of comedy, then come see it,” said Troy. “It’s beautiful, it’s really well done and the hard work is amazing. You won’t regret coming to see it.”

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Harris Billings, Staff Writer

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