TMCC’s Spring Musical is Pippin

K. Patricia Bouweraerts
Pippin Show Graphic

Truckee Meadows Community College Performing Arts students will present the musical “Pippin” in April, featuring well-regarded songs, choreography, themes of royalty and intrigue, and a love story.

“It’s a very fun show to watch—energetic and colorful; the set looks like a big circus tent,” said E.J. Zuniga, musical theater major. “The costumes are vibrant, over the top.”

He adds that singers are having fun performing to a live band.

“The music is very pop-jazzy—it’s like a jazz combo with drums, keyboard, electric bass, and also including a sax, trumpet and trombone,” he said. “It gives it a nightclub cabaret type of sound, but full as you’d find in contemporary musical theater.”

  • When:
    • 8 p.m. on April 13, 14, 20, 21, 26, 27, 28
    • 2 p.m. matinee on April 22 and 29
  • Where: Nell J. Redfield Performing Arts Center, 505 Keystone Ave., next to SaveMart supermarket
  • Tickets: reserve online at showtix4u, or through the box office, 775-674-7610

Prices range from $10 to $17. General admission is $17 at the door, and $15 for veterans, students and seniors. Pre-sale tickets are $15 for general admission and $13 for veterans and seniors. TMCC students may attend at the discounted rate of $10.

“It’s a circus-themed show, so we have some professional acrobats doing aerial work,” he said. “We have some silk dancers that do drops, and your heart almost stops when you see the fall and they catch themselves on the cloth at the end, before they hit the ground.”

The show has a unique presentation.

“It’s very interesting, like a show within a show, as we’re a circus troupe performing the play of Pippin,” he said. “It’s interesting to act as an actor performing a show.”

The Plot Has Twists, Turns and a Love Story

The play acted by the circus performers is set in the Medieval Era, featuring a ruler named King Charlemagne, also known as Charles I or Charles the Great. He ruled much of Europe in the Medieval Period after the fall of the Roman Empire. In the musical’s story, his son, Pippin is on a quest to discover the meaning of life.

The first place he searches is the battlefield, going to war with his father. He finds that striving to become a war hero is not the right path for him, and turns his back to attempts at conquest.

When he becomes king, he gives land and money to the poor, and he disbands the army. But the country does not function well this way, and things are not looking good for Pippin. At one point in the story, Pippin despairs, giving up all hope. The widow Catherine and her small son, Theo meet Pippin and try to cheer him up. Since Pippin has nowhere else to go, he helps Catherine and Theo run their modest estate, although the chores seem menial to him at first.

The relationship of the three transforms Pippin’s life. To find out what happens next, reserve a ticket for one of the nine shows presented by TMCC Theater in April.

For more information, please contact the Visual and Performing Arts Department at 775-673-7291.