What makes Mercyhurst so unique is its balance of activities that satisfy any and all students of all ages, from the roars of the student section at the football games to the authentic pride of MAC/SAC and their weekly attempts to unite students.
On the other hand, something extraordinary about Mercyhurst is its ability to bring big names to the Hurst under the Mercyhurst Institute of Arts and Culture (MIAC).
In recent years, Mercyhurst has hosted big names such as Audra McDonald, Bernadette Peters and Patti LuPone.
This past September Mercyhurst kicked off its 2019- 2020 season with the legend herself Kristin Chenoweth.
Widely known for her Broadway career, Chenoweth was introduced the public to the lovable, glitzy Glinda as she portrayed her in the original production of “Wicked” in 2003.
Chenoweth has also had an exceptional career onstage and on television starring in projects such as “Glee” (April Rhodes), “You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown” (Sally), and most recently “Hairspray Live” (Velma Von Tussle).
Overall, Chenoweth is the mother to modern musical theatre.
Only standing at 4’11”, her big personality and outstanding vocals are what make her a household name.
Chenoweth performed here at the PAC on Sept. 19.
Erie residents and theater kids alike were excited about her presence.
I myself waited for a cancellation ticket for a little over three hours, being the first in line at the cancellation window at 4:00 pm that afternoon.
Fortunately, I scored a ticket.
Not just any ticket either, somehow I scored the perfect seat in the fourth row just parallel to center stage.
The performance itself was a dream come true for me— a lifelong theater kid.
Getting to see one of my idols was something I will never forget.
The moment Chenoweth graced the stage in an oversized Mercyhurst shirt, I knew that I was in the presence of a very successful lady whom I’ve looked up to for most of my 19 years.
Her performance was both personal and inspirational, as she was promoting her new album “For the Girls” which was to be released a week later.
She sang numerous crowd favorites like “The Way We Were,” “Desperado” and of course, “Popular.”
Getting to witness a live performance of “Popular” (a hit song from “Wicked” which Chenoweth performed as Glinda during her time in the original production) was honestly an amazing experience that I can hardly find words to describe.
Chenoweth is a fierce being that can only be described as “original.”
From a glance, one can see that she puts all of her heart and soul into everything she does.
She is a woman of many talents and a vocal range that young thespians only dream of having.
Following her show, I was one of a few that flocked to the stage door for a chance to meet her and fortunately, that day of waiting earned me the reward of doing so.
On and offstage she is the most down-to-earth spirit I have ever met.
She is not pretentious nor proud.
She is a lady with nothing but love and laughter.
She intends to make known that she loves her fans and is appreciative of the people who love and support her.
I will never forget this day and I highly recommend to all students and staff at Mercyhurst to try and attend a MIAC event at least once.
It gives college students the chance to hear and see big-name performers at no cost and a chance to indulge in an evening of entertainment.
For more information on upcoming MIAC events visit MIAC.mercyhurst.edu for more information or contact Dr. Brett Johnson at bjohnson@ mercyhurst.edu.