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The pieces of a musical

A new musical based on songs by songwriter Joey Contreras titled “In Pieces,” opened as a regional premiere on Dec. 3, with Weber State University Theatre being one of the first in the state to showcase it.

"In Pieces," a musical performed by
"In Pieces," a musical based around the songs of Joey Contreras, opened at Weber State University. Photo credit: Weber State University

Director and choreographer Cassidy Wixon has been a fan of Contreras’ work for a long time, specifically with his contemporary pop style of music.

“This being a regional premiere and a new work with all my favorite songs in it made this show a love letter to one of my favorite composers,” Wixon said.

George Michael Edwards III, who plays the character Charlie, explained that the musical was given to them in pieces as well.

“When we were given the script, we were given character names and songs and that’s all,” Edwards said. “We were told ‘Put together a story,’ and Cassidy, our director, said, ‘Yeah, sure, I’ll see what I can do.’”

The story takes place in New York City, following the interweaving stories of several relationships. The characters interact with each other in relatable ways as they try to figure out their relationships. Funny, poignant and sweet, it touches on the fears of confessing feelings, regrets of lost relationships, online crushes and the excitement of new love.

Wixon said she is most excited for the way the characters’ stories weave together throughout the show.

“We made this beautiful thing where all of our cast members connect in different ways throughout the show. If you were to come multiple nights and pick a different cast member to watch you would get a different story because they all fit into each other’s lives differently,” Wixon said. “The show really explores love and connection in a modern society. It’s a show that celebrates love and connection.”

The contemporary pop style of the music also affected the dance choices for the musical. Wixon said the dance sequences were influenced by popular TikTok dances from numerous creators.

The choreography also incorporated a number of props, with one scene using flashing phone screens as lighting and emphasis on the movement of the characters.

There was a great turnout for opening night, with nearly all the seating filled. Audience member Madison Waymer said, “I thought it was beautiful. I thought all of the actors were phenomenal. The set was really simple, but it made the actors stand out more. The lights were succinct and the choreography was fabulous.”

The musical will have more showings every night from Dec. 8 through Dec. 11, with a matinee on Dec. 11.

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