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In a move which has shocked both students and the Societies Council, UCD Musical Society has announced that they will be producing the show “Our House”, a show completely devoid of blackface or any other racist connotations. The announcement has been met with both celebration and criticism, with some claiming that the removal of racist depictions of minorities is “to remove the very spirit of a MusicalSoc show”.
In an interview, society auditor John Higgins said that the decision to produce a show with an entirely white cast of characters was a difficult choice to make and that “getting a majority of the committee to agree was a near impossible task”. Several compromises had to be made to ensure that the vote would go through, including a guarantee that the society would be producing their version of “The Colour Purple” in September. Higgins is excited to see how the show will be received by the musical theatre audience as a whole. “Our most successful shows have been ones where we’ve had white people portraying the experience of others. Cabaret, In The Heights… hell, we even had white people dress as slaves in Parade. But they made the most money, so we just kept making them.”
Many regular cast members of Musical Society shows have decided to boycott the show in lieu of the decision and will not be returning to star in these shows. “Not even a latin dance number? Just English people listening to ska? What the hell am I meant to do with all of this boot polish now?”, said one enraged member, who requested not to be named so that she would remain employable in the future. “Why couldn’t they do one show where we could dress up a bit more? Like Hamilton?” said another.
There are already rumours of a split in the society to create a new Musical Society, where members can perform shows regardless of race. One member of this new society outlined their workaround to the Harpy during a rally. “If we cover our bodies, we can say we are any race. We found these really cool white robes with hoods and small eye holes in our storage, so we’ll wear those. We’ll have to perform our shows outside for now, but we have a few old crosses that we can burn to light our stage. We think we might do a classic like “Birth of a Nation” for our first show. It’s gonna be great!”
Our House will be performed in Astra Hall soon. As of the time of writing, the show remains racism free, although there still is time for someone in the society to add a few questionable costume changes in the Camden Market scenes. UCD Dramsoc have responded to the lack of racism in MusicalSoc’s calendar by announcing their own production of “A Streetcar Named Desire”.