Originally published on October 5, 2018 in The Holcad Student Newspaper.
On Thursday, October 11 at 7:30 p.m., the Celebrity Series will host a finalist group from America’s Got Talent: Catapult. The show will last approximately 75 minutes and will include a short 15-minute intermission halfway through. Promotional materials from the Celebrity Series Office on-campus state that there will be “8 fully-realized stories told through music and shadows,” and that the show will also include “6 short shadow dance videos,” which will play between the various live stage dances. Catapult features incredibly talented dancers who perform behind a screen backdrop, creating shadow silhouettes of different shapes and objects in order to tell a visually and emotionally captivating story.
Connie McGinnis, director of the Celebrity Series here at Westminster, had much to say about the performing group. “Catapult is a very artistic production that everyone should come and see,” she said. McGinnis mentioned that Catapult is unlike many Celebrity Series shows normally offered on campus and that she wasn’t sure if the Celebrity Series has ever done anything like it. She also explained that Catapult would be a great introduction to the Celebrity Series for anyone who has never attended before. “This show is for everyone; you could be 4 years old or 104 years old and still enjoy Catapult, and find some way to connect to the stories they are telling,” McGinnis explained.
In fact, people from all over the country and world are coming to see Catapult at Westminster for that very reason. McGinnis pulled out reservation tickets from people who are coming from all over, including Virginia, Colorado, New York, Michigan, New Jersey, Maryland, Utah, Georgia, North Carolina, Canada, and even Australia. McGinnis explained that the Australian family saw that the Celebrity Series at Westminster would be having Catapult perform and decided to plan their trip around the event so they could experience what Catapult has to offer.
McGinnis is very excited for the campus to have the opportunity to see Catapult and mentioned how she wants students to feel completely welcome within the Celebrity Series community. “It is for everyone, and that includes the students here at Westminster,” she said. McGinnis believes that the arts are a way to bring people together and she beautifully described the mutual connectivity of seeing art as being in the presence of the “human spirit in its highest form.” Art, whether it be theatre, painting, photography, writing, or whatever you consider art, is deeply enriching on not only a personal level, but in the grand scheme of life. As we move into our professional lives, art is what will keep us grounded.
With that in mind, the Celebrity Series also has 2 upcoming shows this semester. On November 17, Midtown Men will be on campus. Broadway fans will not want to miss this show, which includes four talented young men who all got their start on Broadway in Jersey Boys. On December 12, Jackie Evancho will be performing her Christmas show. At only 10 years old, she was a finalist on America’s Got Talent.
Tickets to see Catapult will be free for all students due to the Celebrity Series receiving a generous anonymous donation. If you are interested in attending, be on the lookout for an email from Connie McGinnis on Monday, October 8 for more information about how to reserve tickets. Celebrity Series tickets aren’t usually free, so take advantage of this opportunity while you can. McGinnis urged that “if you need encouragement to step out of your comfort zone and experience a Celebrity Series show, this is your chance.” She continued, “Tickets are free and you will go away feeling that it had been time well spent, I guarantee.”