The Music Man Delivers Stellar and Solid Performance at WCU

100 stars out of 10 Having been a fan of The Music Man since I was little, I was very excited to see what Tony Award winning actor Terrence Mann could do to bring this play to life in Cullowhee. I was counting down the days until I got to see one of my favorite Broadway plays, and one of my favorite movies being done on campus. When I left the Fine and Performing Arts Center on the night of February 23, I was blown away at how wonderful the performance was. Seeing this play made me feel like I was watching a real-life Broadway musical, which was amazing to see. And in my view, I think Mann’s direction of The Music Man was probably the best play I have ever seen before. Period. Maybe it’s because students that I have actually met before were in this production, or maybe it was because that this is one of my favorites since a kid. Whatever the case may be, this was by far an incredible performance. Western was lucky to have had something so great on their campus. Everything was perfect and there was not a single flaw in the entire performance. Harold Hill, played by Broadway star Jared Bradshaw, arrives at River City intending to cheat the community with a scam to train and equip a boy’s marching band. His next plan is to leave town with the money given to him from the citizens for instruments, uniforms, band books, etc. However, plans change as Hill falls in love with a librarian who knows what Harold Hill is up to. He tries to prevent her from exposing him to the citizens, and he accidentally gets the town to fall in love with music. In my opinion, the best part about the show though was at the very end when Western’s Pride of the Mountains Marching Band came out and performed. Everyone in the audience was cheering and clapping at this point, and it was just an amazing experience to see. Also having Bradshaw come into the audience and run around leading the band was remarkable. It made the audience seem as though they were in the play, and that their role was extremely vital in the play as well. Terrence Mann and assistant director Claire Eye did an amazing job directing The Music Man. The entire play was perfect, there was absolutely nothing wrong with it whatsoever. The scenes were gorgeous, the casting was perfect, the singing was amazing, and the orchestra was phenomenal. You could definitely tell that a lot of work was put into this great production. Western Carolina University should be proud to have held The Music Man on its campus and should be proud that a talented Broadway and television superstar was on hand to deliver this magnificent production.