Piedmont University Theatre Opens the Season with Rock Musical RENT, Sept. 28-Oct. 1
The Piedmont University Theatre Department opens the 2023-24 MainStage season with the award-winning musical RENT, performing Sept. 28–Oct.1. This ground-breaking production written by Jonathan Larson is about living as well as you can for as long as you can.
RENT tells the story of several modern-day Bohemian characters living in the East Village in Manhattan during the mid-90s, focusing on their lives as they tackle heavy issues like AIDS, homophobia, poverty, and drug addiction. The story follows Mark, an aspiring filmmaker, his roommate Roger, a songwriter and former drug addict, and their friends as they confront the challenges of everyday life in the artistic lower class, while trying to find happiness.
RENT will be performed Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, Sept. 28-30, at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Oct. 1, at 2 p.m. on the Mainstage Theatre in the Swanson Center for Performing Arts & Communications in Demorest.
RENT director Bill Gabelhausen reminisces about his time as a young actor in NYC.
“During the final semester of my undergraduate studies in 1987, I interned in New York City at Soble/LaPadura Casting Agency and Clyde Vinson's Acting Studio. At that time, Jonathan Larson was refining and polishing a musical called RENT. Little did I, or anyone else, know that he would ultimately write the anthem for all actors who were waiting tables, writers who were working as accountants, or street performers who longed to be loved and labeled as ‘normal.' Thank you, Jonathan Larson. Your message will live on in the hearts and minds of the aspiring theatre artists here at Piedmont University Theatre.”
Gabelhausen directs the Piedmont production, while Benji Stegner, a Piedmont alum and member of the Piedmont music faculty, is the music director. Alumni Jo Collinson is the assistant choreographer, and Senior Sof Delgado is the stage manager.
Cast members include:
Ethan Spinks, in the role of Roger Davis
Gabriel Richman, in the role of Mark Cohen
Dante Wilson, in the role of Tom Collins
Tommie Sirmans, in the role of Benjamin Coffin III
Gracie Tipton, in the role of Joanne Jefferson
Clayton Maddox, in the role of Angel Dumott Schunard
Dakota Rose Chen, in the role of Mimi Marquez
Lexie Partain, in the role of Maureen Johnson
Glorianna Ames, Sarah Bunker, Aubrie Burrell, MacKenzie Cain, Tucker Cochran, Max Daves, Alivia Fuller, Delyna Fuller, Ava Kerpics, Laurana Layton, Jenna Meinberg, and Lyric Rogers
General admission is $10 for adults and $5 for seniors and students. Admission is free for Piedmont University faculty, staff, and students. Tickets may be purchased online at piedmont.edu/tickets or by calling the box office at 706-778-8500 x1355.
RENT is intended for mature audiences.
About Piedmont University
Founded in 1897, Piedmont University is a private, comprehensive liberal arts institution offering a personalized higher education experience focused on student success, academic achievement, and professional development. Offering a variety of career-oriented majors in the arts and sciences, business, education, and nursing, Piedmont’s supportive learning environment is defined by small class sizes, with a 12:1 ratio, that allow students to create meaningful relationships with their professors, classmates, and the campus community.