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“The Last Five Years” a true culmination of memories

Sarah Vlodek, Phil Detrick, Haley Rubin and Abbie Wells performed "The Last Five Years" as their senior capstone performance. Photo by Jonathan Quigley

Sarah Vlodek, Phil Detrick, Haley Rubin and Abbie Wells performed “The Last Five Years” as their senior capstone performance. Photo by Jonathan Quigley

By Jonathan Quigley

“The Last Five Years” is a musical involving aspirations, romance and confusion. It’s a story of two lovers who face conflict over a time span of five years, but in the time span of a few weeks a few of our theatre students took on the challenge of putting on such a show. The task was taken on by seniors Phillip Detrick (playing the character of Jamie), Sarah Vlodek (playing the character of Cathy), Haley Rubin (accompaniment), and junior Abbie Wells (director).

This particular senior capstone was the first of its kind for many reasons. This show was the first musical senior capstone. This was the first theater performance done under the Waldorf University name. Perhaps not a first but definitely a rarity, the show was also performed using the theater’s main stage.

“It feels pretty amazing,” Wells said. “We’re doing things we’ve never done before here and that’s exhilarating. It creates excitement for what’s going to come in the future.”

“Playing in “The Last Five Years” was a very humbling experience. I was so honored to get to play for Phil and Sarah and collaborate on this last senior project,” Rubin said. “There was a lot of time, effort and frustration with the learning process, but the end result was so rewarding.”

The show was performed Friday, March 18 and Saturday, March 19 in the Smith Theater. Each show started at 7:30 p.m. and ran for about an hour and a half. This hour and a half included 14 songs split almost evenly between the performers.

“I felt that the performances went very well! All of us involved had been working really hard for months, if not years, to get all of this music down, and I felt that it was reflected in how well our performances went,” said Vlodek. “When we got to our final dress rehearsal, I thought we had a good show, but once the audience was added, I think that took our show to a whole new level.”

With this show being a senior capstone, this is one of the last times these students will be performing at the school, meaning it’s close to the end of their journey here at Waldorf. When asked what the show meant to him knowing it was the culmination of experience here at the University.

“Knowing this show was a culmination of my time at Waldorf, it allowed me to look deeper into my character and the show itself and make connections to myself over the years here,” Detrick said. “The whole process was applying what I’ve learned while being here and all I could think of was how my time is ending here and how happy I was that “The Last Five Years” was the show and those were the people I got to do my final capstone with. The show meant an immense amount to me and it was also an extreme eye opener to how fast my time here has gone. On closing night during my second song, I made a connection with the lyrics that I hadn’t thought of before, which was ‘I’ve got a singular impression that things are moving too fast.’ That connection made me very nostalgic of my time at Waldorf, and it clicked with me then how quickly time flies. This show proved to be a large metaphor for my life the past few years, for the most part, there’s a cut off when it stops applying to me, and I’m very happy that I was blessed to share this show with Sarah, Abbie and Haley.”