First Fuqua Musical is a Success

Wow. Over a week later, and I’m still in awe of the immense talent Fuqua students can harness and bring to the Geneen stage. I can’t fully describe how magical the Fuqua Musical/Idol event was. Every aspect went off without a hitch. While every single performance that night was over-the-top incredible, the most special and touching part of the evening was definitely the opening Fuqua Musical, dedicated to the graduating class of 2012.

Students on stage
Final moment in the rap/beatbox number called “It’s All About Finance.” (Photo by He Zhenquing.)

As I played a major role in putting on the production (co-writing, composing, playing in the band and conducting), it is no surprise that I am completely biased and think that everyone involved, especially the cast, did a perfect job.

students on stage
Students perform “Dynamite Party Rock Love Song.” (Photo by He Zhenquing.)

A Smash!

To recount the sentiments I heard from audience members, both during the performance as well as after, I can safely say my opinion is shared! Every joke — from the “meathead” character’s opening lines about the ideal life of Station 9, to a couple falling in love to the ballad version of “Dynamite Party Rock Love Song,” to our graduating second-year students remembering all the great Fuqua events but especially the parties — was expertly delivered by the cast and received with uproarious laughter by the audience. The actors, the majority of whom had never set foot on a stage for a play or musical, didn’t miss a beat, playing off the audience as if they had done this kind of thing for years.

students on stage
Students sing “Fuqua’s Here.” (Photo by He Zhenquing.)

The material itself was not easy to learn and digest by any means. To make the music good and interesting the compositions had to be fairly challenging, especially the beatboxing/rap number, and the cast rose to this challenge and beyond. The lines and lyrics were filled with Fuqua and B-school references and it was extremely important to put emphasis on these words and phrases but still keep the flow, a task regarded as difficult by experienced actors. Judging by the audience reaction, I would say this feat was definitely achieved.

Fuqua’s Always Here

students on stge
The grad finale, graduation scene. (Photo by He Zhenquing.)

Our choreographers put together difficult routines that would only work if learned precisely and done in sync, and the students on stage handled this challenge with the grace and confidence of professional dancers. Most importantly, the audience received the musical’s intended message loud and clear — that we all go through similar ups and downs in business school, during orientation, in teams and classrooms, at social events, and recruiting — until finally, it’s time to graduate and move on to the next phase in life. And also that we have each other’s back, as a community, and that Fuqua is a wonderful place that provides students with unforgettable moments and memories. To quote the last line of the musical’s finale, “We’ll always know Fuqua’s here.”

To say the cast, as well as the creative teams and crew, was impressive would be a gross understatement. Fuqua’s first musical was more successful than those of us planning it could have ever imagined. I have heard people echo Professor Shane Dikoli’s feeling that the musical was the best thing they’ve ever seen in Geneen, by far, and that the whole evening, including Fuqua Idol, will be their favorite memory from Fuqua. I know it’s one of mine.

Thank you to the entire cast & crew!

Michael Bruno, Russell Bloodworth, Brittany Lockard, Sunil Nambiar, Michelle Wang, Anthony Ware, Sarah Varki, Pulkit Kheria, Maria Ruatto, Nadina Perera, Sarath Teganjanavanich, Wing-Kam Li, Nancy Dexter-Milling, Azamat Valiyev, Hadas Avnery, Jean Wong, Minming Gu, Scarlett Harrod, Shashi Kejriwal, Preeti Arya, Tekky Andrew-Jaja, Kathleen Cox, Anjali Menon, Megha Agarwal

Nathan Hanagami, Matt Hartley, Sangyoon Kim, Ali Rulle

Jennifer Chin, Bee-Lian Quah, Katya Sukhorukova, Anthony Ware

Lighting, Photography, Coaching, Costume/Makeup, and Logistics
Kevin Shao, Mengmeng Liu, Angelo Madrid, Qing He, JP Higgins, Jean Wong, Amora Lertputtikul, Dora Kuo, Alexis Trevino, Vivian Nasamu-Odior, Marisa Allen, Shruti Gangwal, Kim Lambert, Lin Zhang, Dionne Hill, Naresh Panda, John Wendel, Bee-Lian Quah, Eldar Gizzatov, Ravi Nagar


Matt Portner, Ali Rulle, Anthony Ware, Duke Wong

Ali Rulle, Duke Wong