The Mimes & Mummers Present: NINE

By Ann Pierret

Fordham University’s Mimes and Mummers will perform the Tony Award winning musical NINE this weekend. The cast of seventeen undergraduates has been rehearsing six to seven days a week since school resumed in January. The club puts on four shows each school year, typically one musical and one play each semester. They all participate in a voting process in May of the previous school year to select the next season.

Pam Zazzarino, FCRH ’14, is the senior representative of the Mimes and Mummers’ Executive Board and a member of the cast. Zazzarino says she wanted to be a part of NINE because she “loves the idea of the show, and that it portrays the film noir trend that was relevant to the time.” She appreciates that NINE delves into the lead’s subconscious mind — his memories and dreams — in the form of a musical.

A scene from the Mimes and Mummers production of NINE. Courtesy of Emily Pandise.

A scene from the Mimes and Mummers production of NINE. Courtesy of Emily Pandise.

Zazzarino plays one of the sixteen females involved in the life of Guido Contini, the lead character. Contini is an Italian film director who runs into several problems because his mind is stuck at the age of nine — hence, the title. Zazzarino explains, “Contini’s mind stopped after his 9th birthday, so he never really grew up. He thinks he can get away with anything. It doesn’t help that he’s very talented and sought after by several women.”

Zazzarino plays the role of Carla Albernese, Contini’s mistress. She says her character is Guido’s passion, while his wife is his brain and his muse is his source of inspiration.

Mike Dahlgreen, FCRH’14, plays the lead, Guido Contini. He describes his character as a “modern day cassanova.”

“He really believes he loves each of them [the women],” Dahlgreen explains, “Contini binds his personal life closely to his creative life, so everything revolves around these women, including his film career.”

“This is what causes all of his problems,” says Emily Pandise, current President of Mimes and Mummers. You see in the show that the lead character “is at a crossroads in his life because he’s a film director who can’t come up with a new idea for a film,” Pandise explains. “It’s really sexy, but also an emotionally grounded show. The music is beautiful and the vocal talent is incredible.”

Pandise can say this because she’s seen the show progress from the very beginning. She co-chaired the production’s light design. She beams, “People are really going to enjoy it!”

NINE runs Thursday, February 27th to Sunday, March 2nd. All performances will be held in Fordham’s Collins Auditorium. Thursday through Saturday’s performances are at 8pm. Sunday’s matinee begins at 2pm. Tickets are $5 for students and $12 general admission. On Thursday, admission is free for students.

The Mimes and Mummers is a 157-year old organization. They are the 2nd oldest collegiate theatre company in the nation.
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