Tops in Town
Pepperdine does it again! This time they got their celebrity-packed audience’s attention with an old-fashioned songfest, a tradition that’s been going strong for some 51 years. So, when Charlie Runnels, Chancellor Emeritus, invited us to a pre-show dinner he co-hosted with Keith Hinkle, Vice President for Advancement and Public Affairs, we promptly accepted. Others who attended the dinner included David Baird, Seaver Dean Emeritus and Provost Darryl Tippens. (President Andrew Benton was unable to attend but had enjoyed going earlier in the week.)
Groups had $400 and barely two weeks to learn the theme, write songs and scripts, build sets, fashion costumes and gather for late-night rehearsals. This year’s theme – “On the Job” – allowed students to use any and all job-related themes. More than 500 students were involved in themes entitled: “Fairytale Justice,” “Please Pardon Our Dust,” “Mission Demolition,” “Hotel Graziadio” and “In the Center of the Ring.”
Student groups were singing, dancing and competing for the coveted sweepstakes prize as celebrity guest judges rated their mini-musical performances. Because we attended on the last evening, the student group scores were tallied and the winner was announced –“Mission Demolition” – Gamma Ghekkkkkt Sigma and Friends.
As we walked to Smothers Theatre, it was apparent that construction was going on at main campus. This construction project is going to provide an additional 9,500 square footage which will include the expansion of their largest auditorium, Elkins Auditorium, to seat an additional 100 people. It will also add an annex to the building which will provide four new large classrooms. This annex is going to help create a more harmonious connection between Joslyn Plaza, Smothers Theatre and the Weisman Museum Plaza.