Top: Edward Delgado as Lt. Cable and Rick Sanchez as Luther Billis
Bottom: Ana Hernandez as Bloody Mary and Sanchez as Billis

UTSA Lyric Theatre presents classic musical 'South Pacific'

By Tim Brownlee
Assistant Director of Public Affairs

(Sept. 28, 2005)--The UTSA Department of Music's Lyric Theatre presents Rodgers and Hammerstein's classic, "South Pacific," at 7:30 p.m., Sept. 30, Oct. 1, 7 and 8, and 3 p.m., Oct. 2 and 9 at the Buena Vista Theatre on the Downtown Campus.

The timeless musical by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein is set in an island paradise during World War II. One of the most popular and influential shows in Broadway history, "South Pacific" has captivated audiences around the world for 50 years.

The score features some of the most enduring standards in Broadway history including "There is Nothing Like a Dame," "I'm Gonna Wash That Man Right Outta My Hair," "Bali Hai" and "Some Enchanted Evening."

At the heart of the musical is the love story of a naive young Navy nurse, Nellie Forbush, and an older French plantation owner, Emile de Becque, who meet on a U.S.-occupied island in 1943.

With an underlying theme of overcoming racism and prejudice, young soldier Lt. Joseph Cable and a beautiful native woman, Liat, also fall in love. A scheming sailor, Luther Billis, and the native queen of the black market and local philosopher, Bloody Mary, add supporting roles. While waiting for action in the war, sailors and nurses put on a musical comedy show.

In the UTSA production, Tiffani Tyler, a Houston junior, and Jillian Cox, a Dallas sophomore, will play Nellie Forbush in alternating performances. Luis Ramos, an El Paso senior, and D.J. Harris, a San Antonio sophomore, will perform the role of Emile de Becque on alternating days.

"It's the first time any of us has been double-cast in a role," said Tyler. "It's an unusual experience, but we work well together and it has made me concentrate on the task."

"We have taken the role in different directions," said Cox. "But, it's a real character that you can get lost in."

"Playing Emile is challenging," Ramos said. "I have only done comedies before, and it takes more work to do a serious role."

"I think it's beneficial to be double-cast," said Harris. "You see another interpretation, and it makes you work harder on what you're doing. You have half the time with the director than if you were the only one playing the role, so you have to be focused."

Admission is $15, $10 for students military with ID and seniors age 55 and older. Advance tickets by credit card are available by calling (210) 458-5685 or at the door one hour before curtain.

For reservations or more information, call (210) 458-5685.

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