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Up Side Story: An Amazing Performance

It was in an overcrowded Burden auditorium that the HBS community welcomed the premiere of the 28th annual HBS Show last Wednesday, with more laughs, cheers, and applauses than the place had ever witnessed.

This success starts with a uniquely talented team of writers. Up Side Story chose to describe the adventures of John Deere (Rob Zeaske, NA), a promising business leader with competitive advantages in the agricultural space and a geographical focus on the Midwest. The story follows Deere in the glamorous but also cruel HBS World from his first cold call to a well-deserved award by the Dean. With meticulous and sarcastic observation of the rites of HBS, the script made great fun of the campus construction mania, of the job market (Lexi, I am really sorry about your second round with eToys), and of the somewhat voyeuristic use of classcards. The text also built on the HBS lingo of ZOPAs and Andon cords to reveal their true meaning. (e.g., “Optical networking is what happens when you are looking across a crowded room and your eyes suddenly meet someone else’s who happens to be staring back at you.”)
The show revealed the breadth of the acting skills present at HBS. The smile, the innocence, and the passion for frameworks of Maria McKinsey (Nadia Boulos,ND) surely did not leave former consultants indifferent. The passion of Antoine Corde (Imran Amed, ND) calling for a new French revolution against the evil “Septembres” was cheered during the whole show, although Imran’s personal nature is “to be a lover, not a fighter”. The performance of Lenny Chang, OG as an Asian Tony Sarto caught in a dilemna between his love for Maria and his attraction for Hot Rods was simply hilarious. Colston Young, NE as president of SA, redefined the concept of nerdism for our greatest pleasure. But the image that will remain anchored the most deeply in my memory is the one of Rob Zeaske showing up for his first TGIF and candidly asking who had this fantastic new idea of giving away free beer. Rob, your acting skills were a source of joy for the whole audience and of pride for your entire section.
A full edition of the Harbus would be necessary to give to the singers, the choreographers, the dancers, the band, and the rest of the team the credit that they truly deserve. The voice of Gary Binford, NC and well-known member of Heard on the Street, was particularly enjoyed by his numerous fans.
One can only thank each of the participants for their impressive talent and their energy. With the show Producers, Frank Andrasco and Jeff Gatto, we can conclude that if by its ambition and its scale the 2001 HBS Show was “a bit crazy,” the unanimous hurrah of two MBA classes “makes it all worth it.”

April 2, 2001
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