North Central College - Naperville, IL

North Central College presents “South Pacific” July 27-29, Aug. 3-5

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From left, Dennis Ortman, Abe Vences, Liam Burnes, Brian Lynch, Richard Laidman.
From left, Dennis Ortman, Abe Vences, Liam Burnes, Brian Lynch, Richard Laidman.

North Central College’s Summer Musical Theatre presents Rodgers and Hammerstein’s musical “South Pacific” July 27-29 and Aug. 3-5.

Six performances will be staged at 7:30 p.m. July 27-28 and Aug. 3-4 and at 2 p.m. July 29 and Aug. 5 in North Central’s Pfeiffer Hall, 310 E. Benton Ave., Naperville. Tickets are $15/adults and $10/students and senior citizens; call the North Central College Box Office at 630-637-SHOW (7469) or visit

Based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning book “Tales of the South Pacific” by James A. Michener, “South Pacific” is set on a south sea island during WWII. The production is directed and choreographed by Brian Lynch, North Central College’s fine arts director. Lynch is a stage veteran who starred as Jean Valjean in the Broadway touring production of “Les Miserables.” That touring production between 1989 and 1992 took him to Tioman, the island that was used in the original film of “South Pacific” for Bali Ha’i.

“It was enchanting and mesmerizing,” Lynch says. “Though a far cry from the service men and women who were stationed so far from home to defend this country, I did have a small taste of being in heaven while in hell, being so far away from home and family. But that image of Bali Ha'i will remain forever.”

“‘South Pacific’ contains one of the most beautiful, haunting scores by the classical musical team of Rodgers and Hammerstein,” Lynch says. “The show captures that period of waiting during World War II when the U.S. was in paradise yet on the brink of war. It is a heart-warming human story that is eternal.”

The story revolves around two couples who fall in love in a tropical paradise but must combat their own personal prejudices amid a horrible war. “South Pacific” contains some of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s most beautiful songs, including “Some Enchanted Evening,” “Younger Than Springtime,” the haunting “Bali Ha’i” and the rousing “There Is Nothing Like a Dame.” Winner of 10 Tony Awards for the Broadway production, “South Pacific” is perfect entertainment for the entire family.

The cast of principal roles for “South Pacific” includes (part: name, hometown):

Ensign Nellie Forbush: Erin Walsh of Downers Grove
Ensign Nellie Forbush: Alaina Wis of Naperville
Emile de Becque: Brad Morrison of St. Charles
Ngana: Emma Lee of Bolingbrook
Jerome: Megan Melnikoff of Naperville
Henry: Richard Laidman of Naperville
Bloody Mary: Hillary Haymond of Plainfield
Bloody Mary: Lisa Stach of Downers Grove
Liat: Elisa Maguidad of Downers Grove
Bloody Mary’s Assistant: Cassandra Balaskas of Lockport
Luther Billis: Cullen Rogers of North Aurora
Stewpot: Sean Lynch of Warrenville
Professor: Cody Bergmann of Montgomery
Lt. Joseph Cable, USMC: Brett Bush of Clarendon Hills
Capt. George Brackett, USN: Roger Hendrickson of Danville
Cmdr. William Harbison, USN: Stan Austin of Wheaton

North Central College’s Summer Musical Theatre series celebrates its 15th anniversary this year, though the tradition of summer musicals at the College dates back more than 50 years. “South Pacific” is the third and final summer production of 2012, following “The Wizard of Oz” and “Princess Ida.”

Navistar is underwriting sponsor of North Central College’s 2012-2013 Fine and Performing Arts Season. The season is partially supported by USG Corporation and a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency.

This summer production is one of many ongoing programs hosted at North Central College to enrich and broaden the academic and cultural outlook for the College and community. For a comprehensive schedule of North Central’s 2012-2013 Fine & Performing Arts Season, art exhibits and other musical and theatrical productions, visit or call the box office at 630-637-SHOW (7469).