Joseph Coddington presents his adaptation of “tick, tick… BOOM!”

Tick, tick…BOOM captivating play on show at Neese Gray Theatre. The play’s message focused on not allowing your fears take control of you.

“Tick, tick…BOOM” captivating play on show at Neese Gray Theatre. The play’s message focused on not allowing your fears take control of you.

On Sunday, March 5, 2023, the all-students captivating play held spectators spellbound as the cast performed the well-rehearsed piece, “tick, tick…Boom!” The performance drew the audience into a trip of self-judgment and the realization that life is short. It also emphasized the need to make good and valuable use of the time we have because a person can be here today and gone the next day.

“Tick, tick…Boom!” was originally performed as a “musical monologue” by Johnathan Larson in 1991. This adaptation by Joseph Coddington, a senior voice performance major who played the lead role as “Jon,” chose this play adaptation for a reason.

“So, it was my senior project. I wrote my senior thesis on Jonathan Larson. I wanted to do something combining my music major, my theater minor and I presented the show to the theater department to do it. They approved me and then it has kind of been in the works since then. ”

The play had a very significant message to convey to both students and faculty in the audience. Coddington was in the best position to reiterate this.

“I would say time is the big overall theme and doing what you love, even when there is not enough time.”

Nicole Mellon Vernie, a fifth-year psychology major with minors in philosophy, shared her views on the noteworthy thoughts of the play.

“I think the significant message is that even if things aren’t going your way, it is important to push through and to keep working hard because something might come out of it after all.”

Linda Elrod, a professor at Washburn Law School who was in the audience shared that the message of the play was quite clear.

“Keep trying, keep working at it. Though you are going to run into a lot of dead ends, if you keep pursuing your dreams, you will eventually get there,” said Elrod. “Jonathan Larson, who was almost 30 and was almost ready to give up, did a workshop and Stephen Sondheim, who is one of the biggest names in the business, he died last year, liked his work and helped him get to the place where he eventually had a broadway show.”

The audience at the play was rich with faculty and staff. The rapt attention of students and faculty was noticeable, evidence that it was a time well spent and a valuable message well received.


Edited by Aja Carter and LeSha’ Davis