Every year Alpha Psi Omega, theater honor society at Pittsburg State University, does a service project to reach out to the community.

Every year Alpha Psi Omega, theater honor society at Pittsburg State University, does a service project to reach out to the community.
This time they wanted to do something different and special. Lara Ismert,  Pittsburg math and English senior and society secretary, came up with the idea of doing a full-fledged production to raise money for the Children’s Advocacy Center, which aids children who have been victims of  abuse and seeks justice for them.
The show, “A Very Potter Musical,” will be presented at 8 p.m. May 2, 3 and 4 in the Grubbs Studio Theatre.
“A lot of people had seen it and enjoyed it,” said Micah Black, junior political science major from Mound City.
A parody on the popular  Harry Potter books premiered in April, 2009 on the University of Michigan campus, the show features music and lyrics by Darren Criss and A.J. Holmes and a book by Matt Lang, Nick Lang and Brian Holden. It is currently available to watch online, and is a viral hit.
“We chose this show to specifically target college and high school students, as well as other adult members in the community who probably grew up partaking in the popular phenomenon,” said Taylor  Patterson, sophomore communication education major from Wichita.
Patterson warned, however, that the occasional obscenities and sometimes crude humor of the show may not make it ideal for younger audience members.
“We do believe this show will be hysterical and nostalgic to a mature audience,” she said.
The show is being directed by four students. In addition to Black and Ismert, they include Jeanine Kunshek, senior Spanish and psychology major from Girard, and Jacob Hacker, senior communication major from Garnett.
In fact, the entire production is being done by the students, though Doug Bennett, communication faculty member, and Lisa Quinteros, veteran local costume designer, provided some tips.
“The four of us are not only directing and acting, but each is in charge of a specific area,” Ismert said. “It’s an organizational challenge.”
In addition to playing a 12-year-old boy, Ismert is in charge of music and dance for the show, while Black is doing costumes and props, Hacker is serving as technical director and  Kunshek is in charge of publicity and promotions.
She’s working on something really interesting, based on the game of quidditch.
“Logan Qualls will dress in a gold morph suit and we’ll chase him around campus and hand out flyers for the play,” Kunshek said.
Enthusiasm for the show has been great, Ismert said.
“The thing that’s made this a successful play is the show itself,” she said, noting that it’s not always easy to get college students to come to rehearsals.
“For most shows we’ve had to bribe people to do lights or stage management, but people have come up to us and asked to do things,” Black said.  “People who have never been involved in PSU theater before are taking part.”
It doesn’t hurt, the students added, that the cause is such a worthy one. Who wouldn’t want to help abused children and help bring their abusers to justice?
Hacker said that the goal for the production is to raise $300 for the Children’s Advocacy Center.
In addition to ticket proceeds, “Going Back to Hogwarts 2013” bracelets will be available for  a $1 donation.
“You can also put a bead in a jar for a donation to support your favorite house at Hogwarts,” Hacker said. “We’re just doing anything we can to bring in a few more dollars.”