Clarke Takes Center Stage at Grand
Clarke University will play a major role in two productions at the Grand Opera House in Dubuque this summer as faculty, students and alumni are part of the cast and crew in “Les Miserables” and “9 to 5.”Clarke professor of drama Joe Klinebriel will direct “Les Mes,” which runs July 26-28 and Aug. 1-4. In addition, six Clarke students are in the cast – Luke Van Meveren plays the part of Jean Valjean; Austin Rea is Thernardier; and Rebecca Brosnan is Fantine. Other appearing onstage are Tim Gelhaus as the Bishop of Digne, William Schwalb as Enjolras, and Ben Graham as Joly. Clarke alum Alison Ott is the stage manager and Jodie Frayne, another alum, is the costume designer. Two more Clarke students will be behind the scenes – Carrie Pieper is the assistant stage manager and Josh McDowell is the hair and makeup designer.Three students and one alum are in the cast of “9 to 5” – Rebecca Brosnan is Doralee, Austin Rea is Joe, Chelsea Stratton plays Kathy, and alum Mike Link is Hart. Clarke assistant professor of music Brian Burns is the music director and student Josh McDowell is the costume designer.“9 to 5” runs June 21-23 and June 27-30.“I think that our partnership with the Grand Opera House over the last three years or so has proven to be a wonderful opportunity for our students to demonstrate the fine training that they receive in the drama department at Clarke,” said Klinebriel. “The internship possibilities have been filled with a number of our students, largely because the Grand recognizes the fine gifts that these students can bring to the venue. Our students have enjoyed performing in and working backstage on the quality productions that the Grand has offered in the summers.“Time and time again, I am told by the administration at the Grand that they ‘love having the Clarke students involved because they bring such high quality work to the Grand and continually contribute their professional abilities and work ethic.’ The Grand offers a fabulous opportunity for young performers and Clarke’s drama and music faculty to be a part of a strong and growing arts scene in Dubuque, and our students are taking every advantage of that opportunity!”For more information, contact the Clarke University Marketing and Communication Office at (563)588-6318.