Also, the play is about community.
“At the end of the day, it’s about what you do with your life while you’re here and there’s no day like today,” Pierce said.
In fact, the final line in the show is “no day but today.”
“We need to savor every minute and remember we have a responsibility to help others,” he said. “In the end, it’s about love. It’s about community. It’s about responsibility.”
The serious side of the play shouldn’t keep people away, however.
“It’s a lot like life,” Pierce said. “It has moments that are sheer joy. It has some that very painful.”
As for the music, it’s a fresh sound for DLO, he said, adding, “It’s something the audience will find fresh and invigorating and open new eyes, as well as bring a new generation into the theater.”
Marty Lindvahl, musical director, along with Belinda Smith, agreed that “Rent” is a different kind of musical for DLO.
“It’s not your typical ‘Oklahoma!’ or ‘Music Man,’” she said. “If you’re looking for a Pollyanna, feel-good message, you’re not going to get that.”
The lyrics are compelling, she said, and recommended people shut their eyes and listen to the words.
The music is beautiful, she said, and there are some ballads.
However, “Rent” is about the story line, she said, adding, “The story is pretty gritty. It’s about real life.”
Every musical, even Walt Disney stories, has a dark side, she said.
“Our goal is to inspire people to be the change they want to see. It has to be the individual who makes a difference,” Lindvahl said.
People say, “I’m just so blessed,” but what do they do in return? They need to give back through their time or talents, she said, asking, “How are you going to make a difference? How are you going to inspire and encourage people?”