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VShow 120 Cast Announced!

What picture is complete without Alma smiling at you too?

What picture is complete without Alma smiling at you too?

Without further ado, here is the cast you can expect to see on stage this spring in V120. Congrats all around to the cast!

  • Sam Balzac CC ’17
  • Ellie Beckman CC ’16
  • Brittany Beljak BC ’16
  • Lacey Bookspan BC ’17
  • Michael Carter CC ’14
  • Alex Donnelly CC ’14
  • Lindsay Garber BC ’16
  • Emma Grueskin BC ’17
  • Kyle Marshall CC ’17
  • Brittany Searles BC ’17
  • Matt Soto CC ’16
  • Sean Walsh CC ’14

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  • v116 alum says:

    @v116 alum CONGRATS to the entire cast and c-team! You’re in for quite a ride in the next few months – enjoy every second of it. You are in the incredibly capable hands of Emily Feinstein (also a v116 alum!) so there’s nothing to worry about.

  • As a theater person... says:

    @As a theater person... When talking about diversity in something like the Varsity Show, it’s also important to realize that the demographics of the performing arts community are just not the same as those of the wider student body. There are definitely extremely talented people of color who audition for shows, but as someone who has auditioned before there are honestly just a lot of white people who like to do musical theatre here at Columbia. Maybe that’s because of wider cultural problems that should be fixed, either at the high school level or in society at large, but that’s not something that can be fixed at a callback when the production team has to cast the best show they can. Because the Varsity Show is the main thing that people outside the community look at and is such a Columbia tradition, people think it needs to reflect the diversity of the student body. Ideally, it would, but the only way for that to happen is for a more diverse audition pool. Now, before some commenter brings in an example of some of the many talented people of color at this school, I’m not talking individuals, I’m talking demographics. Columbia is only about 40% white, but I have never seen a musical theatre audition room or a callback that even comes close to approaching that number.

    No other campus group gets this kind of scrutiny for the racial makeup of its members, nor should they.

    Getting mad at the production team (or even worse, at the actors), is simply impotent, self-important slacktivism that disrespects the hard work of the Columbia theatre community.

    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous Agreed. black people invented being cool, so why would they do musical theater

  • CC '15 says:

    @CC '15 Why are Barnard students allowed to participate in our show?

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous Why do I only ever see arguments about diversity on Vshow posts (as opposed to other selection processes of wide interest, like Spec or Bwog board, or Phi Beta Kappa (but that’s not by students))? Is VShow worse? Do people just not care about anything else as much? Or is Vshow nepotism and exclusion just a meme that survives through anything?

  • Just so ya know says:

    @Just so ya know I was at callbacks this year for V120, but was not cast. After watching everyone audition for six hours, I can honestly say the people in the picture above were the most well-rounded people at the audition. I was laughing at their acting decisions the entire day, even though they were my “competition.” I applaud the V120 creative team for deciding to cast the most talented people and not worry about the inevitable diversity debate. Yeah, I’m bitter I wasn’t cast, but at least I was beat out by some of the funniest and most talented people on campus.

    1. me says:

      @me Magnanimous.

  • Other Mexican says:

    @Other Mexican It’s OK, we’ll accept him.

  • YAY! says:

    @YAY! this is such a talented group of people!

  • sigh says:

    @sigh The cast of this year’s Varsity Show is not indicative of the Columbia theater “circle jerk.” This comment feed is.

    With comments about Bloody Bloody lyrics, the light design, and Sean Walsh appearing in other shows, I would argue that over 80% of these commenters are members of the theater community: a spiteful circle of jerks who refuse to be happy for each other and constantly shit on their own community’s work and talent.

    *mic drop*

    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous anonymity is a bitch

  • Just out of curiosity... says:

    @Just out of curiosity... …has it occured to anyone crying “nepotism” that the reason similar people have gotten cast in many shows is that a) they are talented performers, and b) they are committed to theater and performance, and therefore the ones trying out for multiple shows?
    There’s also a matter of a production team knowing how an actor is to work with. If they’ve worked with someone before who they know is a good performer who takes direction well, then yes, they may be inclined to take them over someone they’ve never seen who gets a little nervous during a callback.
    However, please also note that almost half of this cast is Class of 2017, ie people who until the beginning of this semester were not involved in the theater community, nor did they know anyone in it.

  • but says:

    @but They took the lighting designer from that show too!

  • High Hopes says:

    @High Hopes As long as the writers aren’t as retarded as the writers of last year’s show…

    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous Eric Donahue is writing again. He’s terrible and so awkward

  • Wow says:

    @Wow Vshow…. you picked the wrong C-team, and now you picked the wrong actors. V121- learn from their mistakes! How can a cast be all white (except 1) when we walk around columbia and are constantly surrounded by diversity!!!!! So sad and disappointing… They are probably going to argue that people of color did not show up at auditions. WELL, I DIDN’T SEE A SINGLE FLYER UP FOR AUDITIONS! HOW ARE YOU GOING TO EXPECT DIVERSITY TO SHOW UP IN THE AUDITION ROOM IF NO ONE HEARS ABOUT AUDITIONS!

    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous And again the Asians are swept under the rug…

      1. AZN says:

        @AZN @Anonymous: not true dude, this lack of pigment means exactly the same to us. #pocstrugz

  • Official Varsity Show Press says:

    @Official Varsity Show Press Hello all. We regret to inform you that this years varsity show once again lacks any racial diversity. Because of this we have decided to hold a “black varsity show” which will feature the same content as the regular varsity show(aka. white varsity show), but will be held in the back of Roone Arledge. Thank you for your time.

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous no principals and ensemble?

  • but says:

    @but SEAN WALSH tho

    1. um says:

      @um because you surely didn’t get enough of him in his other two shows? in varsity show: here’s a ton of sean walsh and varsity show: here’s a SHIT TON of sean walsh.

      1. excuse me... says:

        @excuse me... sean walsh is an extremely talented performer, as well as an overwhelmingly kind human being, and is absolutely deserving of being cast in V120. please take your rude and unnecessary opinions elsewhere.

        1. Anonymous says:

          @Anonymous “an overwhelmingly kind human being”

          Okay, well, let’s not go crazy here…

          1. Who are you? says:

            @Who are you? No one’s going crazy. He’s an overwhelmingly kind human being.

  • Tobias says says:

    @Tobias says If the Columbia theater community continues this circle jerk we’ll soon have a mess on our hands…another “Great Netscape”

    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous with the giant circlejerk they’re making it impossible for people to come from behind

  • ... says:

    @... why aren’t any of the 119 cast members there?

    That awful show was wasted on this school’s best talent… and now these fools?

    wow 120 you sure better be confident in your material…

    oh.. wait … it’s written by the same untalented people.


    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous well, with last year’s train wreck who’d want to come back and repeat the horror?

      also V118 best show

    2. I mean says:

      @I mean 119 people must have reauditioned, there was great talent there. But instead they decided to cast Sean Walsh who has monopolized Columbia theater. Oh how the varsity show reminds us all that it’s not whose most talented, but who has the most friends in the right places.


      1. cc '14 says:

        @cc '14 You must not be old enough to remember Ke$ho, if you don’t think Sean Walsh is a good choice.

      2. For the love of god says:

        @For the love of god “Monopolized Columbia theater.” That is the most dramatic thing I’ve ever read. If you saw V118 you’d realize why he got in again.

        Also, you’re saying 119 people couldn’t get in because they didn’t have “friends in the right places.” HALF THE C-TEAM IS V119. I don’t understand your logic.

        Furthermore, you meant “who’s,” not “whose.”

      3. Anonymous says:

        @Anonymous Ok I really like accusing theater groups here of being dicks but Sean Walsh is legitimately an extraordinarily talented human and as far as I could tell the dudes in v119 could not exactly sing so idk man -_-

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous 7/12 of these actors also appeared in Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson. Interesting.

    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous NEPOTISM YEAH YEAH

    2. nepotism....yeah, yeah says:

      @nepotism....yeah, yeah …which was directed by V120 director…

    3. ALSO says:

      @ALSO 7/12 of these actors also go to Columbia. #WompWomp

    4. and says:

      @and it’d be one thing if bloody bloody was actually good… the only redeeming part of that show were the lights

      1. true but says:

        @true but the acting was the strongest part of the show

  • I have the biggest crush says:

    @I have the biggest crush on Sam Balzac

    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous I want his Balzac in and around my mouth

  • i propose says:

    @i propose affirmative action on behalf of GS

    (actually this is the GSer from last year’s show, I really just want you to get off my lawn)

  • ellie beckman tho says:

    @ellie beckman tho is a star

  • SAM says:


  • i propose says:

    @i propose affirmative action on behalf of SEAS

    (actually engineers have too much shit to do thank god they don’t have to be part of this trainwreck to-be)

    1. CC '15 says:

      @CC '15 GS… just like Barnard. That’s why

  • i propose says:

    @i propose affirmative action on behalf of the Class of 2015

  • all white says:

    @all white all white

    1. actually, says:

      @actually, based on the picture, a whole one of them is pretty racially ambiguous.

      1. Anonymous says:

        @Anonymous Have fun playing Token Diverse Guy, a rich character with a complex psychological profile

      2. actually, says:

        @actually, the black person with the outstretched arms is Alma…

        1. Van Owen says:

          @Van Owen Bwog, if you box any of the comments on this post, box this one. If anyone’s taken a stand against the Varsity Show’s exclusivity in recent years, it’s you. But someone needs to do it – otherwise these same complaints will be hashed out year after year.

      3. Anonymous says:

        @Anonymous If the Columbia theater community continues this circle jerk, we’ll soon have a mess on our hands…another “Great Netscape”

    2. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous No ’15, this is class warfare

    3. Mexican guy B@B says:

      @Mexican guy B@B Pretty sure Matt Soto is Mexican. But as a white Mexican myself, it puzzles me how the university sees me one way on paper but differently face to face. Discuss while I finish a lab report. kthxbye.

      1. actually... says:

        @actually... i’m pretty sure he’s puerto rican but point taken

    4. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous how on earth is vshow going to tackle issues like yellowface and blackface without employing yellowface and blackface?

  • hiiiii says:

    @hiiiii please don’t make a turd show like last year? kthx

    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous deff wasn’t the fault of the actors last year

    2. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous It’s sad because the original 119 show last year was so much better than the weather machine final show.

    3. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous V120: it’s V119 without the bitter aftertaste!

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