Where’s Charley?, which opens March 25th as the final production for Langara’s Studio 58 this year, is dedicated to the memory of Lloyd Nicholson. In addition to teaching at Studio 58 for over 25 years, Nicholson worked on a number of the company’s musical productions through the years. We spoke with Where’s Charley? Director Dean Paul Gibson between rehearsals to talk about Lloyd and the legacy he leaves behind.
Gibson and Nicholson’s relationship goes back quite some time. As a graduate of Studio 58 himself, Gibson, himself gay, first studied under Lloyd and subsequently returned to Studio 58 as both an actor and director, most recently collaborating on The Boyfriend in 2008.
“Lloyd was a musical terrorist,”, recalls Gibson fondly. “There was a wonderful tension that he brought to his work. He was never shy about saying what was wrong and certainly was not a coddling instructor.”
But despite being so demanding, Gibson says Nicholson had such a vast knowledge of musical theatre that his exacting standards came from the best possible place.
“His one goal was to make each of his students a better singer or at least make them think they could sing better,” explained Gibson.
There is no doubt that Nicholson’s exacting standards continue to have an impact on life at Studio 58, even after his death. Asked what Lloyd might think of Where’s Charley? being dedicated to his memory, Gibson thought he would be thrilled and not just because he had helped choose in the show before his death.
“Lloyd knew there was a style that needed to be acknowledged with this show and this was one show that was doable with the resources at Studio 58,” said Gibson.
Nicholson’s legacy at Studio 58 is also being marked with a new scholarship which will be given to a Studio 58 student who demonstrates outstanding musical ability.
Studio 58, Langara College
25 March – 18 April 2010
Studio 58 proudly presents Where’s Charley?, a charming and hysterically funny musical adapted from one of the most popular farces ever written, on stage from March 25 to April 18, 2010. Frank Loesser’s tuneful and catchy score delivers non-stop entertainment for the entire family! Tickets are $16.50 – $24.50 each available online at Tickets Tonight or by calling 604.684.2787.