Sweeney Todd in Concert

For those of you who have never attended a Coastal Carolina University production, boy are you missing out!  Coastal offers Bachelor’s degrees in music and theater, and a Bachelor of Fine Arts in musical theater.  These programs (particularly the BFA in musical theater) attract students from all over the country.  What this means for you is wonderful entertainment that is sure to be a great time!

I have never been disappointed by any Coastal production, but Sweeney Todd in Concert may have been the best I’ve seen.  A symphony including many local musicians, CCU graduates, and CCU students were prominently displayed on stage, instead of in the usual “pit” area.  The actors performed around the symphony- something I had never seen done but thoroughly enjoyed.  

Metropolitan Opera baritone Louis Otey played the role of Sweeney Todd, while Ann Benson, a CCU faculty member and New York City opera star, played Mrs. Lovett.  Much of the rest of the cast was played by extraordinarily talented Coastal students.   I think what impressed me most was that these students only had three weeks to prepare for their parts.  I’m telling you, if you haven’t seen a Coastal production please check it out!

Coastal’s Cultural Arts Center offers numerous activities for both Coastal students and community members, including concerts, plays, art gallery exhibits, and lectures.  You can find a comprehensive list of these events here.

Not only are these events spectacular, but they are also budget-friendly.  Most range between $15-20 for community members, with CCU faculty, staff, and students receiving discounts.  Karen and I purchased our tickets for $5 the day of the show.  I would say it was the best $5 I’ve ever spent!