Theatre Review: Waiting for Lefty & Still Waiting

The Boston College Theatre Department’s 2017-2017 season is off to a dynamic start! Check out the glowing reviews below for the dual production Waiting for Lefty & Still Waiting, directed by Patricia Riggin.

And be sure to mark your calendars for the upcoming BC Theatre Department shows, The Misanthrope  November 16th-20th! Click here for the Facebook event details or here for the Theatre Department website for more information about this scathing comedic satire written by Molière! Boston College’s performance, directed by Dr. Theresa Lang ,shouldn’t be missed, especially with the BC Theatre Department in such fine form (read the theatre review below to see what we’re talking about).

Review By Alexa Villareal


(photo from Boston College Theatre Department’s Facebook. Follow them for more info on upcoming performances and events!)            

BC Theatre Department‘s dual production of Waiting for Lefty & Still Waiting is a unique take on Clifford Odets original play, Waiting for Lefty, that brings workers’ struggles to the modern day. Code Blue by Kade Snodgrass, Labrats by Melinda Lopez, and Pipe Dreams by Sheri Wilner make up & Still Waiting, the second portion of the performance. The four individual plays convey a powerful message that reminds us that unions and workers’ struggles are not merely problems of the past, but are painfully present today.

The intricate set does a spectacular job of representing both the past and the present. Large suspended steel beams take up the center stage, contrasted by the digital images that were on the sides of the stage. During the Waiting for Lefty portion of the play, the digital images portrayed images from the early twentieth century of people picketing and on strike for workers rights. For the second half of the performance, the digital images changed to match the appropriate theme for the other three plays and the focal point on stage shifted from the old steel beams to more modern features.

The actors did a spectacular job at portraying the various problems individuals and families face when they are not being treated fairly by the workplace. Waiting For Lefty told the stories of raw, emotional fights, like the fight between the broke taxi driver, Joe (Michael Pisaturo), and his wife, Edna (Michaela Dolishny), to Dr. Barnes (Christine Schmitt) and Dr. Benjamin (Stephen Kiely). The desperation and conflict felt in the individual characters stories was contrasted with the spine-chilling scenes of unity, where the entire cast presented a united front, accompanied by guitars and fiddles, to protest the treatment of workers.

In an impassioned performance of Code Blue by Cassie Chapados, Michaela Dolishny, Clare Zhou and Lexi Auth, the actresses embodied the modern day struggle of nurses, and the inner conflicts they faced: having to chose between demanding their profession allow them to care for themselves, or caring for their patients. Labrats shows the discrimination that still exists within governments and organizations today through a moving testimony of the character Omar (Raymond Norville) who has to choose between providing opportunities for his wife and children and doing the research he believes is important. Cassie Chapados and Michael Pisaturo and their portrayal of Florrie and Joe, two plumbers both awaiting a life-changing opportunity to become a plumbers apprentice, showcase the conflicts between two equally desperate people, both fighting the injustices of the work world.


Student Artist Feature: Meghan and Katie Kelleher!


Meet Meghan and Katie Kelleher! This singing sister-duo shares their art story with the BC Arts Insider: fond memories of their experiences with the BC Music Guild, their collaborative creative process, and their performances here at BC! Megan and Katie will hit the stage as a Singer/Songwriter duo during the 2016 Arts Festival‘s BC’s Best!

Don’t miss BC’s Best, a loved Arts Festival event, this Thursday, April 28th from 8-10pm in the O’Neill Plaza Tent. Meghan, Katie, and other talented BC student musicians will perform their original work in a variety of genres and compete in a Singer/Songwriter Competition and Battle of the Bands!


In what ways have you been involved in the arts at Boston College?

We have been pretty much just involved in The BC Music Guild. Katie is the Treasurer and I am the Vice President. As E-Board members of the Guild we put on open mic nights every other week and we help put on a bunch of other events throughout the year, like band showcases, the Singer/Songwriter competition, Battle of the Bands, and Break The Bubble, which is a showcase we put on in Faneuil Hall. The Guild also runs an awesome volunteering program. We help promote and run all these events and love performing at all them too. The Guild has been our connection to performing on campus, to music on campus, and to other BC musicians. On top of that, we have made some really close friends by being on the E-Board and by participating in these events.

What has participating in the arts meant to you during your time at BC?

The Music Guild is a really close-knit group of musicians, so being a part of The Guild has really helped us to grow into ourselves. Before I knew about The Music Guild, I really had no idea how to perform or continue playing music, which is something that Katie and I were always so passionate about before I left for BC. When Katie got to BC, we started to participate together in Open Mic Nights and immediately had that outlet again. Since participating in Music Guild events, we have grown so much as musicians and as performers in general. It’s been awesome to have such a cool community of performers to hang out with and learn a lot from. We don’t do too much creatively at BC outside of music, so The Music Guild events have been a huge outlet for us. I think we’ve both become a lot more confident as performers and people in general through these events.

Who or what inspires you and why? 

Lots of people. The whole Music Guild E-Board is loaded with some really talented musicians who have inspired us a lot and who we admire a lot. We grew up on a lot of bands and musicians that had a role in shaping our music taste but more so just us as people. Some of these are Fleetwood Mac, Van Morrison, Pete Yorn, The Rolling Stones, Tom Petty, Paul Simon, David Bowie, The Talking Heads, and The Strokes. Mostly Dad music. Some other musicians and bands that we admire are Lady Lamb The Bee Keeper, Bon Iver, Sufjan Stevens, alt-J, Vampire Weekend, and Gregory Alan Isakov.

What does your writing process look like?

We write all our songs together, but usually what happens is that one of us will write a song and then we will change it a bunch together. We usually have a pretty basic version of a song or an idea for a song and then we’ll edit it together and add different parts and instruments and things as we go. It’s cool having each other to bounce ideas off of and also to tell the other when something is stupid or needs work.

What is your most memorable arts experience and what did you learn from it?

I think being in The Music Guild in general has really shaped both of our college experiences on a lot of levels musically and socially. But, if we had to pick one experience it would probably be the Singer Songwriter competition last year. Not specifically the final competition night, but the experience as a whole. We both wrote a lot of songs or parts of songs, but never did anything with them or worked on them or performed them. Really working on our songs together for weeks, playing them live, and then moving on to the next round was such a new and cool and fulfilling experience. We’re excited to be a part of the Singer/Songwriter competition again and to be able to play in Battle of the Bands as well!



Student Artist Features: Dance Edition! Meet Aashini Shrivastav and Elisa Bushee

Meet two talented BC Dancers: Aashini Shrivastav, of Boston College Masti, and Elisa Bushee, of Dance Organization of Boston College & Synergy Hip Hop Dance Company, as they share their dance Art {Hi}Stories with the BC Arts Insider. Don’t miss Aashini Shrivastav and Elisa Bushee as they perform in the 2016 Arts Festival !

Check out all of the Arts Fest’s dance programs:

Thursday April 28 @ 3:15pm- Dance Showcase! (free)

Friday April 29 @ 1:15pm-Dance Showcase-Critics’ Choice! (free)

Saturday April 30 @ 12:00pm- Dance Showcase! (free)

Saturday April 30 @ 8:00pm- Dancing with bOp! (free with Eagle ID, all others, $15 at the door, $10 for senior citizens)

(all in that giant, hard-to-miss tent in the O’Neill Plaza!)

Read on for a BC Arts Insider exclusive as both dancers share their stories and reflect on their experiences with performance art at Boston College…

Student Artist Feature: Meet Aashini Shrivastav!


In what ways have you been involved in the arts at Boston College?

I’ve been a part of BC Masti since my freshman year, and have been Captain of the team for 3 years now. It has truly been an amazing journey, as I’ve gotten to be a part of 4 amazing families filled with talented dancers. We have performed at many events, big or small, and each performance has come with hundreds of irreplaceable memories.

What has participating in the arts meant to you during your time at BC?

In addition to the stress-buster factor, Masti has truly provided an outlet for me to share my love for dance and Indian culture on campus. When I came to BC, I knew I wanted to try out for the team and spread the beauty of Bollywood fusion wherever I could. I love it when people ask me more about Masti’s dance styles, because it gives me the opportunity to educate people about this comprehensive art form. Furthermore, Masti literally means ‘fun’ and so needless to say, I have had a LOT of fun with the team over the last 4 years.

What is your most memorable arts experience and what did you learn from it?

I think my favorite experience so far, is winning in the Cultural category 2 years in a row at Showdown. When our name was announced last year, I was in sheer disbelief for several minutes. Winning consecutive years meant that Masti had come a long way from its founding in 2003, and that we were truly leaving our mark upon Boston College. It felt unreal.

What is your favorite Arts Festival memory?

I think my favorite Arts Festival memory is Dancing with bOp! last year. One of our team members had missed the tech time, and so was completely unaware of stage dimensions. Long story short, during a stunt he accidentally fell back into the singers and it was perhaps the team’s favorite stage moment of the year! His expression was absolutely priceless and we could not stop laughing as we continued to perform. It somehow made our performance better!

Student Artist Feature: Meet Elisa Bushee!


In what ways have you been involved in the arts at Boston College?

During my past four years at Boston College, I’ve danced and choreographed for Synergy Hip Hop Dance Company and the Dance Organization of Boston College. Each group showcases different styles of dance, but both are entirely student run.

What has participating in the arts meant to you during your time at BC?

Participating in the arts has contributed to my education as a whole person. Participating in Synergy and DOBC has kept me physically and mentally healthy. Getting involved the arts has allowed me to express knowledge and creativity in an outlet other than academics. I’ve been privileged to develop my teamwork and leadership skills through both groups. My dance groups have become my family. They have instilled confidence in me, and have supported me through my endeavors as a young adult. Participating in the arts at Boston College has made me feel like I have a purpose and that I belong.

Who or what inspires you and why?

The dance community of the world inspires me. I have learned tremendous amounts from each individual I’ve danced with. Whether it’s during rehearsals, or on stage during a performance, seeing my friends put all their energy and passion into the choreography motivates me! I’m also inspired by dancers and dance groups I’ve never met, but have seen their works on Youtube or on stage. Seeing other dancers put their whole heart into something they love ignites me and my soul to do the same! The ability to convey a message through movement is something that will forever leave me in awe about the concept of dance, and will forever inspire me to keep pursuing my passion for it.

What is your most memorable arts experience and what did you learn from it?

ALC Showdown 2016 was my most memorable arts experience. Showdown is always my favorite event of the year because it gives each dance group exposure to show the greater BC community what we love and what we work hard doing with the goal of promoting inclusivity and diversity. My last Showdown was bittersweet because I was sad it was my last one, but extremely proud of the works both Synergy and DOBC showcased. At the end of my final performance, the tremendous amount of love and support I could feel from my teammates left me in tears on stage. Even though I was in front of a crowd of 4,000, I truly realized that I dance–in the words of a former Synergy director–because I love it, not because I want the love.

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Graduate Student Artist Feature: Diana Sunder

Meet Diana Sunder, BC grad student, writer, and producer, as she shares her BC Art Story and inspiration behind With Love!

With Love is a full length drama which debuted Off-Broadway as a one-act play, and is now performing as a staged reading at the 2016 Arts Festival on Thursday April 28th at 7:30pm in the Stokes Art Tent! This BC talent is not to be missed!


The English graduate program at Boston College is home to Diana Sunder, a talented English Masters student with a knack for playwriting. Diana attended Colby College for her undergraduate studies, and graduated with an impressive resume: a BA in English, a concentration in Creative Writing, and a minor in Theater & Dance. Her current studies in the BC English Grad Program surround Early Modern and medieval drama. Diana is looking forward to her first BC Arts Festival production experience!

With Love tackles the issues of suicide, LGBTQ identity, and faith surrounding the main character Angelica, a 16-year-old from a tight knit family dealing with the recent suicide of her Uncle Jack. Audience members watch Angelica as she struggles to maneuver through her own grief as well as her sister’s. We also meet Jack, as he is portrayed confused and sitting in a mysterious waiting room.

Sunder’s inspiration for the play comes from a personal experience of a family member’s unfortunate suicide during her childhood. While coping with this issue head on as a child, she was unable to find media representations to turn to during the grieving process. This made her feel isolated – and that suicide was a “private problem.” Diana channeled this experience as she wrote the play, in an effort try and fill the void of representation and provide an example of how to behave, mourn, and move forward in times of loss.

Diana brings With Love to BC in hopes of connecting to the community. Diana wove Catholicism into the play; audience members will recognize that the family in the play is religious. With the current discussions around suicide and LGBTQ rights in the Catholic Church, Diana hopes the play may be able to strike a chord with members of the audience exploring their understanding of these topics. The play comes to BC after having been produced in two Off-Broadway competitions in 2014 where it was a finalist for Best Play (Spring One Act Competition, Manhattan Repertory Theatre and The Strawberry One Act Festival, The Riant Theatre) following its Colby College debut as a staged reading in 2013.

The show features BC talent in writing, producing, directing, and acting roles! Come enjoy With Love, and support our local arts at the production tonight, Thursday evening, at 7:30pm in the Stokes Art Tent! See you there!


Student Artist Feature: Sanjay Pamaar

Meet Sanjay! As a 2015 Arts Award Recipient and an active member of the Boston College music scene, he has plenty of art stories to share. Read on as he reflects upon his BC art experiences. Spoiler Alert: you may spot Sanjay on stage with bOp! a couple of times during the 2016 Arts Festival! Don’t miss BC bOp!’s free performance on Friday, April 29th at 12:00pm in the O’Neill Plaza, and definitely don’t miss the                                                swirled-dance-and-music-extravanganza that is…

Dancing with bOp! 2016, this Saturday, April 30th, at 8:00pm in the O’Neill Plaza. All Students get in for FREE with your Eagle ID, and tickets are available at the door for the general public ($15, or $10 for senior citizens).

In what ways have you been involved in the arts at Boston College?

I’ve heavily involved myself with music here at BC. Since my freshman year, I’ve been heavily involved in the BC Bands program here as a percussionist. I’ve been an Executive Board Member and Percussion Section Leader of the Symphonic Band (affectionately known as SymBa), Drumline Section Leader in the BC Marching Band, and a drum set player in both BC bOp! and the Pep Band.

Lately, however, I’ve also been taking classical music composition very seriously, studying with Professor Ralf Gawlick, which eventually led to my Senior Composition Thesis – a work for Symphonic Band, which was premiered on April 12th.

I’ve also been doing some music teaching around BC. I currently volunteer as a Student Mentor at St. Columbkille through the BC Bands Service Group and assist our percussion instructors in teaching the Percussion Tech class, or winter drumline. I also love to attend other concerts with groups I’m not involved in, keeping my ears filled with the music made by my friends.

What has participating in the arts meant to you during your time at BC?

Well, in January I decided to leave my pre-medical studies behind to pursue graduate school in music composition. So perhaps being so engrossed in music at BC caused an entire career change for me! Musical and artistic processes also require me to pour 100% of myself into them. My time at BC has definitely taught me a lot about my weaknesses and strengths as an artist, leader, and teacher. Speaking with all of my teachers, professors, and directors about musical leadership has also helped me become more aware of my role as a musician.

Studying composition, in particular, has kept me engaged in the artistic process. I really like being around artists at BC too, because they are so well-rounded and willing to discuss their art. For example, I compose more modern classical music, but my friend likes to write music for musical theater, and my roommate writes screenplays, short stories, television scripts, and comedy. The three of us really enjoy speaking to each other about our work, and discussing different problems in the creative process.

Who or what inspires you and why?

My teachers and mentors have definitely been huge role models for me, encouraging me to keep working hard in music, whether with composition, conducting, or teaching. The work that they all do is fascinating, and they greatly influence me. My family has also been so supportive, and they keep me motivated to continue in my musical path. Other than that, my friends and I who are involved in the arts help push each other, and keep each other in check. I really enjoy our lively discussions about art.

What is your most memorable arts experience and what did you learn from it?

Tuesday, April 12, 2016 is a day that I’ll never forget. That night was the premiere of my senior composition thesis with Symphonic Band. This 15-minute piece for wind band is titled Visions of Marian Rose, and it’s a reflection and meditation on conflicting emotions that occur during my involvement in my family’s medical mission work on our home island of Iloilo in the Philippines. Marian Rose World Mission has teamed with LIG Global Foundation to bring our volunteer services to Iloilo each January for the past four years, focusing on women’s health and well-being issues, providing medical and surgical services to less fortunate women and young girls with limited access to necessary health assistance.

The premiere itself was emotional to say the least – the energy in that room was incredibly spiritual. It was really scary to share and conduct this extremely personal work with so many people in the audience and Symphonic Band, but I felt the love and support of the people in Trinity Chapel that night. My family and some of the mission workers were also there to experience that special moment. I’m still processing all of it a few days later, but it’s something for which I’m eternally grateful to everyone involved – audience, mission workers, teachers and musicians alike. That night really taught me that so many people go into art, including the source of inspiration, parents, teachers, friends, supporters, and performers.

What are you most looking forward to for this year’s Arts Festival?

I’m looking forward to seeing my fellow seniors perform all over BC – I really appreciate their camaraderie and friendship over the past four years. We all love to see each other’s events and works, and this Arts Fest is a great culmination of our work. Although SymBa is not performing at Arts Fest this year, I’ll be playing with BC bOp! on Friday, April 29th at 12:00 PM and at Dancing with bOp! on Saturday, April 30th at 8:00 PM.

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Student Artist Feature: Meet Parker!


Meet Parker Aubin! This accomplished musician shares his art story with BC Arts Insider: a four-year love affair with music, BC Bands, and all things bOp!

Don’t miss Dancing with bOp! 2016, this Saturday, April 30th, at 8:00pm in the O’Neill Plaza. Students get in for free with your Eagle ID, and tickets are available at the door for the general public ($15).

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In what ways have you been involved in the arts at Boston College?
Of all of the opportunities in the arts that BC provides, I have felt most at home in the performing musical arts. I have been a member of several ensembles in the BC Bands program in my four years here. Without downplaying the merits of the other groups in which I have played, I have undoubtedly had some of the greatest musical (and otherwise) experiences as a member of BC bOp!. I have also grown the most as a musician and artist in the atmosphere of high-caliber playing and friendly camaraderie that is bOp!.

What has participating in the arts meant to you during your time at BC?
I found my second family as a member of BC bOp!. The tight social bond that we have in bOp! stems from the common goal of creating art through quality music on various stages across New England (and once in Idaho). We each bring something different to the ensemble, and playing together, we forge a sound greater than the sum of the individual components.

Who or what inspires you and why?
With any college group, there is the unique property of member rotation as veteran members graduate and underclassmen join. In my first two years of the ensemble, I was fortunate to have the guidance of two upperclassmen in my section, Dave Bonaiuto and Terry Peng, who were a great source of inspiration to my playing and understanding of our media, jazz. In my last two years, I took on the role of section leader with their influence in mind as I tried my best to impart some of the same wisdom on the other members of my section and the ensemble. I am humbled by the tradition that we uphold in BC bOp! and remember that a portion of our present musical success is owed to the players who came before me. I am inspired not only by my contemporaries in the ensemble, but by the bOp! alumni who set the scene for us.

What is your most memorable arts experience and what did you learn from it?
I have always gotten a lot of enjoyment and satisfaction from our annual Dancing With bOp! show during Arts Fest. This performance is unique for us because we work with the dance groups on campus to provide live musical accompaniment to their routines – which is hardly ever our usual style. It is fun music to play, and the environment of the performance is unparalleled. Each dance group has a different flavor and style and it is a real joy to play with each of them throughout the night. The atmosphere of the audience is also different from most of our other shows. Because of the individual fan clubs from each group coming together with our fans and spectators interested in the show as a whole, the audience is always vibrant and supportive. I love the opportunity that the Dancing With bOp! provides us with to collaborate with various dance groups combining visual and musical arts in a captivating event.

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Student Artist Feature: Anne Wilder of BC bOp! and The Golden Eagles

Meet Anne Wilder! A natural perfomer, Anne has fond memories of her time with BC bOp!, the Golden Eagles dance team, and the Arts Festival! Read on as Anne shares her art history and lets us know what is so special about the Festival’s featured event Dancing with bOp!

Don’t miss Dancing with bOp! 2016, this Saturday, April 30th, at 8:00pm in the O’Neill Plaza. Students get in for free with your Eagle ID, and tickets are available at the door for the general public ($15).



In what ways have you been involved in the arts at Boston College?

I am a vocalist and Student Executive Board member of BC bOp!. In addition to that, I also am the Section Leader of the Golden Eagles Dance Team. I have been performing with both these groups since I was a freshman at Boston College, so performing has been of my life here at BC.

What has participating in the arts meant to you during your time at BC?

The arts have been a huge part of my college experience. The arts have not only provided me with great opportunities but it also allowed for me to meet some of my closest friends! It has been so much to have such great creative outlets where I can express myself and still have a lot of fun in the process.

Who or what inspires you and why?

I am inspired by all different types of art forms. Boston College has such rich and diverse art forms on campus that it allows for us to be continuously surrounded by such great creative inspiration.
What is your most memorable arts experience and what did you learn from it?

My most memorable arts experiences are whenever I have an opportunity to perform. One of my favorite performances of the year is Dancing With bOp! during Arts Fest. It allows me to collaborate my love of dance and music into one show!

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