The Nobles Theatre Collective delivered a hilarious rendition of Something Rotten!, directed by Dan Halperin, over the course of six performances in February. It was the NTC’s first musical on the Vinik stage since Les Misérables in February 2020. The show follows 16th century brothers Nigel and Nick Bottom (Will Grimes/David Hermanson as Nigel, and Chris Tillen as Nick—all ’23), as they try to best their contemporary, William Shakespeare (Gavin Swartz ’23), by writing the world’s first musical, full of clever 21st century references for Broadway fans. Minstrels Rhodes Martinez and Alejandra Mendez, both ’22, heartily welcomed the audience to the Renaissance, accompanying them along the way.

Bea (Nick’s wife), played by Molly Hughes ’23, tackles the patriarchy, while poet-groupie Portia (Madi Shaer ’23) plays the muse to Nigel, to the dismay of her Puritan pop (Jacob Casper ’22). Zach Green ’24, as soothsayer Nostradamus’ nephew Thomas (“with all his gifts!”) helps Nick “nick” Shakespeare’s best idea by peering into the future… foggily. The Bottom Brothers and their troupe, debut Omelet (rather than Hamlet—so close!), but Nick learns that success, when ill gotten, is not all it’s cracked up to be. Once everything gets unscrambled, he learns the meaning of Shakespeare’s words, “To thine own self be true.” Or was it Nigel Bottom?

The NTC’s comical cast included 42 students, (including stage managers Jackie Zhang and Larkin Gifford, both ’23) a crew of 23 students, and a band made up of 10 students plus professionals. Director of Dance Jillian Kinard choreographed, Director of Choral Music Nhung Truong conducted vocal music, Director of Instrumental Music Antonio Berdugo led the pit band, Erik Diaz was the scenic designer and technical director, and Library Co-Director Talya Sokoll oversaw the dramaturgy team. 

Enjoy these wonderful images from the show from photographer Leah LaRiccia, in the gallery below.

Something Rotten!: Book by Karey Kirkpatrick & John O’Farrell, music and lyrics by Wayne Kirkpatrick and Karey Kirkpatrick

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