To everyone that slept through too many of Prof. Hayden’s 9 a.m. Abnormal Psychology classes, Next to Normal is here to refresh your memory. Zach Rufa ’14 has taken on the daunting task of directing this Pulitzer Prize-winning musical about a woman suffering from bipolar disorder. This show examines the toll mental illness can take on a family. Rufa does a nice job of handling such challenging material with support from his talented cast and crew.
A small cast of characters keeps the show moving with their powerful vocal talent. Emily Kassie ’14, who plays the bipolar mother, captures the complexity and conflict of someone who can’t comprehend reality. Although Kassie is half her character’s age, her presence and commitment to every moment combats this and is really the backbone of the show. Sarah Gage ‘15 plays the family’s daughter and stuns with her emotional variability and belting abilities. Similarly, Alex Ostroff ’14, Gavin Kramar ’15, and Elias Spector-Zabuksy ’15 all hold their own against these two talented women who control the world of Next to Normal. Continue Reading