Students have high hopes for Christmas Cabaret

Seton Hall Theatre is putting on the student written production “A Christmas Cabaret,” in the Theater-in-the-Round from Dec. 7 through 9 at 8 p.m. and on Dec. 10 at 2 p.m. Students highlighted how they have grown closer in preparation for the event.

The show was written and directed by Melanie Weir, a senior creative writing and theater major. Jordan Green, a sophomore music education and theater major, is the musical director. Tia Robbins, a junior theater performance and vocal performance major, is the choreographer. In addition, Elizabeth McCole, a junior theater major, is stage managing the show. Taji Steele, a sophomore theater major, designed the costumes.

Students prepare for the Christmas Cabaret Dec. 7-10 in the Theater-in-the-Round. Photo via Instagram/SHU_Theatre

Admission to the show is free and is Christmas-themed, with stage design to resemble a winter wonderland.

The creative team and the cast have devoted a fair deal of time to preparing for this event.

“We have many theatre students working on building the set and decorating the theatre, advertising for the show and working on costumes, makeup, light and sound,” Green said. Another part of preparation included auditioning and casting for specific roles.

Jacob Pacheco, a freshman visual and sound media major, is performing the role of a Coal Department Elf and a soloist in the second act.
He stressed the difference between working with student directors as opposed to doing shows in his high school.

In regards to working with them, he said, “Melanie and Jordan are very cooperative and understanding of any problems or conflicts you may have with the scheduling, as well as being open to the cast’s ideas when it comes to the performance itself.”

This is Pacheco’s first show with the Seton Hall Theater, and although it is a different experience for him, he said he is thankful to be chosen for the show.

As choreographer, Robbins communicates with the cast regularly.

“Being the choreographer of this show was amazing,” she said. “Everyone came in with a great attitude and was ready to work.”
This show did not come without challenges, which varied based on every role.

For example, Green had mentioned the reoccurring issue of time. Conversely, other issues included remembering choreography and lines as well as waiting between scenes.

The cast said they learned a lot throughout the production, including learning more about their roles such as directing and choreographing as well as the specifics of costume designing. Similarly, Pacheco said he learned to appreciate the little parts in the show more and had “a deeper respect for those on the sidelines.”

Steele said audiences can expect a variety of performances.

“The title may initially come off as a bit misleading, since the show is a little more than just a cabaret,” Steele said. “Audiences should be prepared for quite a bit of acting and dancing as well as singing.”

Daniel D’Amico can be reached at

Author: Staff Writer

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