My We Love Ann Arbor story about U-M senior’s world premiere original musical, ‘Shel’


Cast members in rehearsal for “Shel,” including the show’s composer/lyricist/book writer Noah Kieserman. (Photo by Jenn McKee)

Normally, selling tickets for a new show that no one’s heard of is slow-going, to say the least.

But U-M musical theater senior Noah Kieserman’s two world premiere performances of “Shel: A Historically Fictionalized Musical,” happening Thursday and Friday at the Duderstadt Center’s Video Studio, sold out in three hours when tickets went on sale Jan. 26.

Yes, the studio is a relatively small venue – about 65 seats – but even so, excitement surrounding Kieserman’s Hopwood Award-winning exploration of the life of children’s poet/songwriter Shel Silverstein is pretty high. The student production team has even arranged to live-stream “Shel” to a nearby room with four HD screens, in order to accommodate 30 additional people.

Though “Shel” was workshopped for two weeks in Washington D.C. last summer – a group of high school students performed readings and some partially staged scenes – this week’s independent U-M campus production marks the first fully-staged version of the show.

And not only was it easy to find an audience for “Shel”; it’s also been easy to find student artists who want to be involved. READ THE REST HERE


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