Southeast Missouri State University student publication

River Campus to present “The SpongeBob Musical”

Sunday, April 9, 2023
Sophomore acting major Zay Williams plays Sheldon Plankton in the upcoming 'The SpongeBob Musical'. "This is the first time I will be playing an antagonist," Williams said. "Some days it was hard to come in and get in the mindset of the character, and also the physicality of the character, since he is a one celled organism."
Photo by Kerrigan Foster

SEMO’s River Campus is making waves with their rendition of the early 2000s childhood television show “SpongeBob.” “The SpongeBob Musical” will take place in Bedell Performance Hall April 12-15 at 7:30 p.m. and April 15 and 16 at 2 p.m.

The musical follows the classic characters from the television show as they face the eruption of the volcano “Mount Humongous.” The storyline follows SpongeBob and his friends as they try to save the town of Bikini Bottom.

“We really want to embrace what it is like when these two-dimensional characters on television are now brought into three dimensions and made more human,” director Kitt Lavoie said.

Lavoie described the show as funny and surprising, while also being touching and moving at times.

“We’ve been working hard at making sure we can have that humor and belly laughs we’re going for, and also have it steer into those moments where you really feel for the characters,” Lavoie said.

The songs in the musical have been written by famous artists of different genres to follow the plot.

“Every music number in the show is drastically different. You have rap songs where there is hip-hop and breakdancing, an outrageous tap number, and classical musical theater-esque dancing and singing,” assistant director Dani Lorin said. “You get a taste of every single genre and character with these numbers.”

The excitement for the musical does not stop with the characters and music.

Senior musical theater major Michael Reitano plays SpongeBob Squarepants.

“I grew up on SpongeBob, and I didn’t know much about the musical before they announced we were doing it as a show,” Reitano said. “I listened to the show and thought it sounded fun. As I auditioned, I thought, ‘This is right up my alley.’”

The show is family-friendly and open to all ages.

“Anyone is welcome at this show. Anyone can come see this show, from grandparents to your teammate you want to invite, your family, little brother, little sister. Anyone will enjoy this show, especially if you’re a fan of SpongeBob,” Reitano said.

To see the whimsical adventure of SpongeBob and his friends trying to save Bikini Bottom, purchase tickets online or in-person at the River Campus box office.