Hipp's Karaoke Night part of new basement programming

Some of the performers from the Hipp’s recent summer production, “The Great American Trailer Park Christmas Musical,” are expected to appear tonight for Karaoke Night in the theater’s basement.

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Published: Thursday, August 21, 2014 at 8:00 a.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, August 20, 2014 at 10:00 a.m.

Some of the most memorable singing characters this side of Broadway have long basked in the Hippodrome Theatre's spotlight (including, most recently, those zany denizens of Armadillo Acres, the mythical trailer park portrayed in the Hipp's recent summer musical).

Tonight, the glow of the theater's spotlight broadens to include everyone taking the stage in the Hipp's basement, where the theater's new Karaoke Night closes out the summer as its newest fundraiser.

From 7 to 10 Thursday, the Hipp's first spin on karaoke will feature DJ Jarad Bowens from GNYS Entertainment as the host as well as some surprise guests that theater patrons may recognize from past productions — including that recent summer production, “The Great American Trailer Park Christmas Musical.”

“They're surprise guests, people who everyone knows,” says Jessica Hurov, managing director at the Hipp. The theater has contacted performers from the “Trailer Park Musical” as well as other musicals and received some enthusiastic responses. “They've seen them in shows, so they'll be out there doing karaoke,” she says.

“I think it'll be fun to see what music they select when they're not in a show, and what are the kind of things that they like to sing when they get to choose, and in a more playful setting,” Hurov says.

Tonight's event also marks the theater's latest move to offer fundraising events in the Hippdrome basement, which has been available for rentals like wedding receptions and parties but is now being used for the Hipp's own events open to the public.

“What we're trying to do for the new season is offer more of our own programming in that basement,” Hurov says. “In June, we had The Relics and The Impostors play, and so now we're doing our second event, Karaoke Night.”

More events in the Hippodrome basement will be forthcoming, she says. “We're really trying to see what kind of fun event we can put in the basement that people will use our building for, something other than films and mainstage plays.

“We've had ideas like a comedy club, a trivia night, open mic night and improv night. And we've been brainstorming with some of our supporters.

“It really comes down to finding the perfect match, programming it and seeing what kind of response we get; is this something that Gainesville wants us to do?”

So, karaoke anyone?

Contact Entertainment Editor Bill Dean at 374-5039 or at bill.dean@gvillesun.com, and follow on Twitter @SceneBillDean.

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