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Back when I was an undergraduate at Loyola College, I participated in a few of the plays that the drama department put on each year. I went to my first audition by accident. The Chimes had been auditioning for a talent show in one part of the student center. Afterward, a bunch of them drifted up to the theater, and I followed. It was an audition for Gilbert and Sullivan's "HMS Pinafore." They encouraged me to audition, and after hemming and hawing a bit, I did. Afterward, Maurie asked me, "How come you never sang like that for us?" I think that was the first time I had sung solo in public. I played a member of the chorus, and later went on to be part of the cast for "Guys and Dolls."

During the summer, now that I knew people in theater, I discovered the Young Victorian Theater Company. That year they put on three shows: "The Gondoliers," "Trial by Jury," and "Cox and Box." I participated as a member of the chorus in the first two. The last was a three-man show. I even got half a part in "The Gondoliers." Howard Abraham and I split the part of Antonio. I got to sing two lines!

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